Lomas Brown says Detroit Lions sent ‘one-armed equipment guy’ to pick him up

Lomas Brown, a former Detroit Lions offensive lineman, recently shared a surprising story about his experience on draft day. Brown was picked sixth overall by the Lions in the 1985 NFL draft, but he was surprised by how he was picked up from the airport. Instead of a limousine, he was picked up by an equipment staffer in a car, who Brown said had only one arm. The story sounds pretty funny, but Brown is likely not making the story up as the Lions' equipment manager really only had one arm.

Key points:

  • Lomas Brown was drafted sixth overall by the Detroit Lions in the 1985 NFL draft.
  • Brown thought he would be drafted in the teens based on intelligence gathered by his agent.
  • The Detroit Lions kept their draft plans so secret that even the player they picked was surprised.
  • Brown was picked up from the airport by an equipment staffer in a car, instead of a limousine.
  • The equipment staffer had only one arm.
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Lomas Brown's hilarious NFL Draft Story

Here is Brown's draft story, courtesy of Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press:

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“We introduce ourself to each other and I see he’s got one arm, so I’m like saying in my mind, ‘OK, I’m going to grab my own bag. I’m not going to make this guy grab my bag,’ ” Brown said. “So we walk out of the airport, McNamara or whatever the little thing was called back then, and we were just walking and walking, and I’m like, ‘Oh my God.’ And it’s cold now. It’s April, it’s cold up there in Detroit.

“So we walk to the parking lot and in the parking lot he came to pick me up in his car and it was a straight hooptie. It was rusted out at the bottom. I forgot what make and model it was, but it was a hooptie. And I’m like. ‘Oh my God.’ I’m saying to myself, ‘Man, I’m the sixth pick in the draft and they send a one-armed equipment guy to come pick me up in this hooptie, man.’ And I’m telling you, I froze from that. Cause again, it was rusted out at the bottom. I froze from the airport all the way out to the Pontiac Silverdome, and that was my first experience with the Lions.”

The Bottom Line

Lomas Brown's story about being picked up from the airport by a one-armed equipment staffer in a car instead of a limousine on his draft day is amusing but it is also likely true. Back in the day, I was a ball boy for the Lions, and the assistant equipment manager, whose name was Mark, did have one arm. To this day, Mark is one of the coolest guys I have ever met and made me feel more welcome than anyone else in the organization, other than Barry Sanders, but that is another story in itself.

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