Dan Campbell says UDFA WR Dylan Drummond is climbing the depth chart

To say that Dan Campbell is excited about this local kid would be an understatement.

As we approach the tenth day of the Detroit Lions training camp, Head Coach Dan Campbell couldn't help but express his admiration for the undrafted rookie free agent (UDFA) wide receiver, Dylan Drummond from Eastern Michigan. The young player's performance has been nothing short of remarkable and Campbell is finding him “hard to ignore”. Drummond's dedication is clear in every play, as he's rarely caught making a mistake and when he does, he learns from it.

Dan Campbell Dylan Drummond

Dan Campbell says Dylan Drummond is climbing the depth chart

“We liked his tape”, Campbell said, indicating that they were eager to get a look at Drummond, especially given his local background. Once in the building, the young talent didn't disappoint. In fact, his agility, learning curve, and sharpness have been evident, proving that he is ready for the challenges of the NFL.

“You Gotta do everything right, for a guy like him,” Campbell said. “Because you’re (the media) not the only one who sees that, you know, we see it. He makes plays every day. He really mentally can play all the positions. He competes in special teams. And I would say he’s hard to ignore, he’s just hard to ignore. He’s continuing to climb the depth chart. So, he’s doing exactly what a guy like him has to do. He’s doing everything right. And, you know, he rarely messing something up, and if he does he learns from it, he grows, and it doesn’t happen again. So, he’s doing a good job.”

How the Lions Found Drummond

When asked about why the Lions decided to bring in Drummond for a workout, Campbell said the team liked his tape, and once he came in, he did not disappoint.

“We liked his tape, we liked his tape, it helps he’s local, you know, and it’s like, well let’s get a look at him,” Campbell added. “And a lot of times, you don’t know until you get him in the building. And so you like it and once you get him here and you see the movement skills with your own eye, and then, you know it sure helps, because you can find, because you’re not able to get everything. But we knew pretty quick, this is a pretty sharp guy. Like you just, you had a gut feeling he’s gonna be able to get this pretty quick, and so hey man, let’s give him a look, bring him into camp, and he has not disappointed.”

An Uphill Battle

Drummond's record during his tenure at Eastern Michigan was impressive: he hauled in 183 catches for 2,028 yards and 14 touchdowns over 48 games.

However, making the Lions' initial 53-man roster is still a steep climb for Drummond. Given his current performance though, it is highly likely that he will secure a spot in the practice squad for the kickoff of the 2023 season.

2023 Detroit Lions Alternate Helmet 2023 Detroit Lions Training Camp Brad Holmes Justin Jackson Dan Campbell C.J. Gardner Johnson Detroit Lions 53-man roster Shane Zylstra Dylan Drummond
Courtesy of Detroit Lions

Key Points

  • Head Coach Dan Campbell praises rookie Dylan Drummond's performance
  • Drummond’s impressive college record at Eastern Michigan contributes to his potential in NFL
  • Drummond's position in the initial 53-man roster for the Lions is not guaranteed, yet his practice squad spot seems secure

Bottom Line: An Underdog Story Unfolding

The meteoric rise of Drummond showcases the incredible potential within undrafted free agents and emphasizes the importance of giving a chance to players from smaller programs. His story serves as an inspiration to many young athletes and underscores the significance of dedication, determination, and hard work in achieving professional sports aspirations.