We’re still waiting for the Detroit Lions to officially introduce Brad Holmes as the next general manager of the team. He’s expected to meet with the media later on Tuesday, but he has already given his first local interview after accepting the job late last week.
Tim Twentyman of DetroitLions.com scored the first conversation, and it was a pretty revealing one. In it, Holmes describes his interview process, why he was attracted to the Lions job, what his plans are for Detroit’s roster, and his overall philosophy when it comes to drafting and building a team’s roster.
You should absolutely go read it for yourself right now, but if you’re in a bit of a hurry, here are my three biggest takeaways from Holmes’ first interview with the local Detroit media.
Holmes described the Lions’ interview process as unique and ‘first-class’
The Lions weren’t the only one courting Holmes for their vacant general manager position. He was also a finalist for the Atlanta Falcons job after interviewing twice with management there.
Part of the reason it appears Holmes liked what was happening in Detroit is how different their interview process was.
“My first interview with the Lions, I got off and I told my wife, I said, ‘I wasn’t expecting that,’” Holmes told Twentyman. “I had already been through an interview the day before and I thought it was going to be very similar, but it felt completely different.”
He noted how the conversation was more about getting to know each other and who they are as people. He came away very impressed with team owner Sheila Ford Hamp, calling her ‘a genuine soul” and someone you want to win for.
“It was just a first-class process every step of the way with the dialogue, all the way up to (last) Wednesday, when I was awarded the job,” Holmes said. “It’s been first class and it just felt right.”
Holmes is always focusing on ‘succession plans’
There are a lot of questions facing the Lions’ roster. Will they go for a full rebuild or will they simply try to tweak the roster and make a quick turnaround? What will the future hold for franchise quarterback Matthew Stafford?
Holmes almost certainly won’t answer those questions directly, but he did give an interesting quote to Twentyman about his overall philosophy regarding the roster. Specifically, he’s always focused on the long term.
“Everything is about succession plans,” he said. “That’s just how I’m permanently wired. That’s how I view personnel. That’s how I view football. That’s how I view my own personal life.
“I just think making sure you’re aware of all possible angles and all possible outcomes that could happen, I think is very, very critical. I’ll admit I’m a nerd about predictive science and forecasting and I am because I think that’s our job. Our job is to predict the future and I’m also a little bit of a nerd about the psychology of the process.”
Hearing the term “succession plan” certainly should raise some eyebrows, especially when it comes to the status of Matthew Stafford. To be fair, later in the piece Twentyman says Holmes “talked about the quarterback position and Matthew Stafford” in regards to building blocks of the franchise, but a specific quote is never given. You better believe this is a topic that will get more coverage during Holmes’ introductory press conference.
He views his job as to serve the city of Detroit a winner
Holmes noted that he’s already heard plenty about the passion of the Lions’ fanbase, and that’s a big motivator for him as the team’s general manager.
“I know the general manager role and that’s the name of the position, but I truly see it as a service role. My No. 1 job is to serve the City of Detroit a No. 1 football product and hopefully uplift the community in that regard.”
That’s a great line, and one that will certainly get some Lions fans on his side. And while we’ve heard something similar from just about every head coach and GM that has come through here in the past three decades or so, it’s always nice to hear he’s got the fans in mind.