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    Top 8 Detroit Lions draft picks of all time

    It is time to find out which players are the greatest Detroit Lions draft picks of all time.

    As you read through this list, please remember that the list is based on the best draft picks of all time, not necessarily the top players. For example, if Player A and Player B were completely equal as far as accomplishments, but Player A was drafted in the fifth round and Player B was drafted in the first round, Player A would get the nod.

    So, ladies and gentlemen, without further adieu, here are the Top 8 Detroit Lions draft picks of all time.

    #8 – Calvin Johnson (WR) – 1st Round, (2007)

    Calvin Johnson, also known as “Megatron,” is a former professional American football wide receiver who played for the Detroit Lions from 2007 to 2015. He was drafted by the Lions in the first round of the 2007 NFL Draft as the second overall pick, and quickly established himself as one of the top wide receivers in the league. In his rookie season, Johnson recorded 1,331 receiving yards and 12 touchdowns, earning him a place on the NFL All-Rookie Team and setting the stage for a successful career.

    During his time with the Lions, Johnson broke several NFL records, including the record for most receiving yards in a single season with 1,964 yards in 2012. He was also named to six Pro Bowls and was recognized as a first-team All-Pro in three of those seasons. Johnson was widely regarded as one of the best wide receivers in the NFL, earning a reputation as one of the most physically dominant players at his position. He retired from the NFL in 2016, finishing his career with 11,619 receiving yards and 83 touchdowns. In 2019, Johnson was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

    #7 – Charlie Sanders (TE) – 3rd Round, 1952

    Charlie Sanders was a tight end for the Detroit Lions from 1968-1977. He was drafted in the third round of the 1968 NFL Draft and quickly established himself as one of the league's best tight ends. Sanders was known for his reliability, as he consistently caught passes and was an excellent blocker. He was selected to the Pro Bowl seven times during his career and was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2007.

    Throughout his career, Sanders was a key player for the Lions and helped lead the team to three division titles. He was known for his versatility, as he was equally effective as a receiver and a blocker. Sanders was also a leader on and off the field, and his work ethic and dedication to the game earned him the respect of his teammates and coaches. He finished his career with 336 receptions for 4,137 yards and 31 touchdowns. He remains one of the most beloved players in Detroit Lions history and is remembered for his contributions to the game of football.

    #6 – Lou Creekmur (OL) – 2nd round (special draft), 1950

    Lou Creekmur was an offensive lineman for the Detroit Lions from 1950-1959. He was a key part of the Lions' teams that won three NFL championships in the 1950s. Creekmur was known for his versatility, as he was able to play both offensive tackle and guard positions at a high level. He was selected to eight Pro Bowls during his career and was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1996.

    Throughout his career, Creekmur was known for his toughness and dependability. He was a key player in the Lions' dominant running game and was also able to effectively protect the quarterback in passing situations. Creekmur was a dominant force on the field and was a key factor in the success of the Lions' teams during his tenure. He is remembered as one of the best offensive linemen in NFL history and his contributions to the game continue to be celebrated.

    Creekmur was a tough player who played in an era where the quality of equipment was nowhere near what it is now. In fact, you were considered weak if you wore a facemask. As a result, Creekmur broke his nose at least 13 times. Despite broken noses, dislocations, and other injuries that would sideline the players of this generation, Creekmur never missed a game in 10 seasons.

    #5 – Yale Lary (S/P) – 3rd round, 1952

    Yale Lary was a safety and punter for the Detroit Lions from 1952-1964. He was drafted in the third round of the 1952 NFL Draft and quickly established himself as one of the league's most versatile players. Lary was known for his ability to play both safety and punt at a high level, and he was selected to nine Pro Bowls during his career. He was also named to the NFL 1950s All-Decade Team and was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1979.

    Throughout his career, Lary was a key player for the Lions and helped lead the team to three NFL championships. He was known for his dependability, both as a tackler and as a punter. Lary was able to effectively control field position with his punting and was a valuable asset to the team in both offense and defense. He finished his career with a 43.8 yards per punt average and 24 interceptions. He remains one of the most celebrated players in Detroit Lions history and his contributions to the game of football continue to be recognized.

    #4 – Lem Barney (CB) – 2nd round, 1967

    Lem Barney was a cornerback for the Detroit Lions from 1967-1977. He was drafted in the second round of the 1967 NFL Draft and quickly established himself as one of the league's top cornerbacks. Barney was known for his ball-hawking skills, as he recorded 56 interceptions during his career, and was selected to seven Pro Bowls. He was also named to the NFL All-Decade Team of the 1970s and was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1992.

    Barney was a key player for the Lions and was known for his speed and quickness on the field. He was a true playmaker and was often referred to as “The Leaping Lem Barney” for his ability to jump and intercept passes. Off the field, Barney was known for his sense of humor, and he once quipped that “The only things that could catch me are illness and old age.” His contributions to the game of football and his larger-than-life personality make him one of the most beloved players in Detroit Lions history.

    #3 – Jack Christiansen (S) – 6th round, 1951

    Jack Christiansen was a safety for the Detroit Lions from 1951-1958. He was drafted in the sixth round of the 1951 NFL Draft and quickly established himself as one of the league's best safeties. Christiansen was known for his speed, agility and hard-hitting style, and he was selected to six Pro Bowls during his career. He was also named to the NFL 1950s All-Decade Team and was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1970.

    Throughout his career, Christiansen was a key player for the Lions and helped lead the team to three NFL championships in the 1950s. He was known for his versatility, as he was equally effective as a tackler and a playmaker in the passing game. Christiansen recorded 51 interceptions during his career, which was a record for NFL safeties at the time. He was also a threat on special teams, as he was one of the fastest players in the league and was a dangerous returner. He remains one of the most celebrated players in Detroit Lions history and is remembered for his contributions to the game of football.

    #2 – Barry Sanders (RB) – 1st round, 1989

    Here is where I get in trouble with the fans. Remember, this is not a list of the top Detroit Lions players of all time, it is a list of the top Detroit Lions draft picks of all time.

    Barry Sanders is the best running back ever in Detroit Lions' history. He played from 1989-1998. He was drafted in the first round of the 1989 NFL Draft and quickly established himself as one of the league's most dynamic running backs. Sanders was known for his exceptional speed, quickness, and elusiveness, and he was selected to ten Pro Bowls during his career. He was also named the NFL Most Valuable Player in 1997, and he remains one of the most celebrated players in NFL history.

    Throughout his career, Sanders was a dominant force for the Lions and set numerous records, including being the third player in NFL history to rush for over 2,000 yards in a single season. He was known for his incredible balance, vision, and ability to make big plays, and he was a threat to score every time he touched the ball. Sanders retired at the height of his career, but his contributions to the game of football continue to be recognized and celebrated. He was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2004, and his number 20 jersey has been retired by the Detroit Lions.

    #1 – Joe Schmidt (LB) – 7th round, 1953

    Joe Schmidt was a linebacker for the Detroit Lions from 1953-1965. He was drafted in the seventh round in 1953 and quickly established himself as one of the league's best linebackers. Schmidt was known for his intelligence, toughness, and leadership skills, and he was selected to ten Pro Bowls during his career. He was also named the NFL Most Valuable Player in 1960 and was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1973.

    Throughout his career, Schmidt was a dominant force for the Lions and helped lead the team to three NFL championships in the 1950s. He was known for his exceptional play-reading abilities and his ability to make big plays in critical situations. Schmidt was also a leader on and off the field and was known for his dedication to the game of football. He remains one of the most respected and celebrated players in Detroit Lions history and his contributions to the game of football continues to be recognized and appreciated.


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