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ESPN writer: Detroit Lions’ rookie class will have biggest impact in NFL

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One NFL analyst believes the Lions got great immediate value in their nine picks.

Florida Atlantic v Ohio State Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images

In 2018, the Detroit Lions’ draft class had a pretty big immediate impact. Frank Ragnow was a Day 1 starter who had a decent, but unspectacular year. Kerryon Johnson looked as advertised for most of the season. While Tracy Walker and Da’Shawn Hand looked outstanding in limited roles. In all, the Lions got a lot of value from that draft, even in each player’s rookie season.

Well, according to one writer at ESPN, the Lions may have done it again with their 2020 draft class. A panel of analysts were asked a simple question: Which NFL team’s rookie class will have the biggest impact this season? One panelist, Kevin Seifert, picked the Lions:

“If nothing else, the Lions are going to get volume out of this draft,” Seifert wrote. “Four picks are likely Day 1 starters: cornerback Jeff Okudah, running back D’Andre Swift, linebacker Julian Okwara and guard Jonah Jackson. Three others could play big early roles.”

He’s not wrong. Those four are expected to take over significant roles, while Logan Stenberg could also become a starter by season’s end. Throw in potential role players in Quintez Cephus and Jason Huntley, and Detroit could realistically see five to seven contributors from this class of nine.

Check out the full ESPN article here, where they select their favorite and most head-scratching picks of the 2020 NFL Draft.

  • Lions head coach Matt Patricia had a zoom meeting with the local beat writers on Tuesday. You can watch the session here, and also a one-on-one segment with DetroitLions.com’s Tori Petry.

  • Some news on the local beat: Detroit News’ Justin Rogers has been furloughed for a three-week period. But don’t feel too bad for Justin, he has a pretty positive outlook on the situation:

Before he left, he put out an All-Decade team for the Lions.

  • Enjoy some Calvin Johnson, because why not?