NFL insider notes: Lions’ fortunes about to change with draft haul execs love, Eagles roster nears NFC’s elite

Perhaps no team did more to alter its fortunes this weekend than the lowly Detroit Lions. I love what they did. And, much more importantly, evaluators I reached out to in the aftermath of the draft felt the same way.

If this franchise finally gets turned around, if Dan Campbell and Brad Holmes accomplish what so many have tried and failed, and if the Lions actually become a consistently winning organization, I suspect we look back at their player acquisitions from the 2022 draft as a major reason why. They have gone about turning the assets they received for Matthew Stafford into potential foundational pieces, and it appears on paper as if they are well on their way.

Aidan Hutchinson was the consensus top overall pick before Travon Walker broke the combine. Look at Jacksonville’s vast history of blowing or overthinking top 10 picks; the fact they took this gamble probably bodes well for the Lions. Grabbing the Michigan pass rusher and culture-changer and exemplary human being is huge for Detroit. And it set the tone for a great three days.

For all of the talk about receivers in this draft, and the different varieties available, and all of the varied opinions, one thing stood out to me among the evaluators I trust: Jameson Williams has the best chance to be a truly franchise-altering talent. No one has higher upside at that position. No one else can take the top off a defense like him. And once he’s healthy, he’ll do just that. I can’t applaud Holmes and his staff enough for paying what seemed to me to be a bargain price to move up 20 spots.

“If you are going to make a move like that in this draft, on that side of the ball, you do it for that kid (Williams),” one executive told me. “He could be truly special.”

Another said: “I love what the Lions did. They kickstarted their rebuild.”

On Day 2 they grabbed perhaps my favorite player in the entire draft in pass rusher Josh Paschal, a…


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