The Detroit Lions were highly praised after the 2022 NFL Draft, given the blue-chip talent they acquired.
However, their 2023 draft hasn’t been given the same high marks as many around the league believed they had with both first-round selections.
Their draft could have looked completely differently if the Seattle Seahawks had not selected Illinois CB Devon Witherspoon.
According to Albert Breer, the Lions were ready to select Witherspoon with the No. 6 pick via Bob Condota.
Breer reports that if the Seahawks hadn’t taken Devon Witherspoon at 5, the Lions would likely have taken him at 6. pic.twitter.com/VP2cEiWz6E
— Bob Condotta (@bcondotta) May 2, 2023
When the Seahawks selected Witherspoon, the Lions immediately sold their choice to the Arizona Cardinals, and moved back to No. 12.
The Lions selected RB Jahmir Gibbs and LB Jack Campbell in the first round.
Campbell was particularly surprising to many in the league, as he was not viewed as a first-round talent.
Despite the challenges ahead, the Lions are now ready to compete for the NFC North.
Aaron Rodgers is out of the division, leaving the Green Bay Packers on somewhat shaky ground without a veteran quarterback.
The Chicago Bears are still rebuilding under young quarterback Justin Fields, and their team has yet to find a real identity.
While the Minnesota Vikings made the playoffs last year, many are expecting them to take a small step back.
Will it open the door for the Lions to claim the division?
After a 2022 season where the Lions finished 9-8, including one of the NFL’s best offenses, they are on a mission to continue improving.
Head coach Dan Campbell has revitalized the Lions’ culture, and all that’s left is for the team to realize its full potential.
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