When it comes to selecting a running back in the first round of the NFL Draft, I have always been 100% against the Detroit Lions taking that route. After all, it is a passing league, and I have always believed that if you have a solid offensive line, a productive running back could be taking on Day 2 or even Day 3 at a much cheaper rate. That being said, there will be a running back in the 2023 NFL Draft who I believe is going to be a perennial Pro Bowl player, and GM Brad Holmes may just think he is too good to pass up. That player is Bijan Robinson out of Texas.
Bijan Robinson's Impressive Stats and Achievements Ahead of the 2023 NFL Draft
If you follow college football at all, you have certainly heard of Robinson as he is hands down the best RB prospect to enter the draft in quite some time. Here are the numbers that he put up during his time at the University of Texas.
- 31 career games
- 539 carries for 3,410 yards (6.3 yards per carry)
- 33 rushing touchdowns
- 60 catches for 805 yards (13.4 yards per reception)
- 8 receiving touchdowns
Pros for Lions selecting Robinson with No. 18 pick 2023 NFL Draft
As noted above, the NFL is currently a passing league, but the Lions go about things a bit differently because of Jared Goff's strengths and weaknesses. Instead of using the pass to set up the run, the Lions like to use the run to get Goff into play-action passing situations. Bijan Robinson is a running back that would excel in the Lions' offense.
- Having a running back that can pick up chunks of yardage when needed is crucial
- When the Lions can get into second down and third down and short situations, a play-action pass can be deadly
- Robinson is also a great pass catcher, which makes him a 3-down running back
- Robinson is durable, which is a must if you are going to take a RB in the first round
Cons for Lions selecting Robinson with No. 18 pick 2023 NFL Draft
There are no guarantees when it comes to the NFL Draft, but I am ultra-confident that Bijan Robinson, assuming he stays healthy, will quickly become one of the best all-around running backs in the league. That being said, though I do think he will be a great NFL player, it does not necessarily mean the Lions should take him at No. 18.
- Selecting Robinson at No. 18 means a $2.8 million cap hit (via Spotrac).
- Though $2.8 million is not a massive hit, the Lions could save money by taking a RB on Day 2. (Think Zach Charbonnet out of UCLA)
- The Lions' biggest needs are on the defensive side of the ball.
- Taking Robinson would mean not taking a player such as CB Devon Witherspoon or CB Joey Porter Jr.
Should the Detroit Lions draft RB Bijan Robinson at No. 18?
I am absolutely in love with Robinson, and if he is still available when the Lions are on the clock with the No. 18 overall pick, I do think they will consider taking him. That being said, when it comes down to it, my thought (at this time) is that Brad Holmes should avoid taking the shiny toy and take the best defensive player who is still on his board. I truly believe that when you have a dominant offensive line like the Lions do, it would be wiser to take a RB on Day 2 or even Day 3.
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