Since 2003 the Detroit Lions have a total of 66 victories. That puts them ahead of only the Cleveland Browns (63) and the Oakland Raiders (56). Not exactly something you want to hear if you are a fan of the Lions.
One of the main reasons for this is the fact the Lions do a poor job of developing talent. Specifically, they do not develop draft picks they select outside of the first-round into Pro-Bowl players.
In a recent study conducted by Will Laws of Sports Illustrated, Laws took a look at every team in the NFL since 2003 and how many draft picks selected outside of the first round ended up making the Pro Bowl.
In those 12 seasons, the Lions have sent exactly one “home grown” player selected outside of the first round to the Pro Bowl. That puts them dead last along with the Oakland Raiders and the St. Louis Rams. In comparison, the Chicago Bears and the Dallas Cowboys have sent 20 players apiece.
Developing mid and late-round talent is crucial in the NFL and the Detroit Lions have failed in that area. Let’s hope Jim Caldwell and his coaching staff can reverse the trend.
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