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Detroit Free Press’ Dave Birkett: Expect a ‘draft full of surprises’

We finally made it. Mercifully, mock draft season is nearly over.

Syndication: Detroit Free Press Junfu Han via Imagn Content Services, LLC

Well everybody. We finally made it. The 2022 NFL draft is upon us. Soon, the months of speculation will finally come to an end, and we will get some definitive answers as to which direction the Detroit Lions will go. This will be the new regime’s second draft, and it’s a big one.

General Manager Brad Holmes and coach Dan Campbell have more resources this time around, possessing five of the first 100 picks. Enough to significantly bolster the core group of their roster.

Everyone around the league, both locally and nationally, are feverishly posting their final mocks, predictions, and takes before the first round gets going on Thursday night. Brad Galli, of WXYZ Detroit 7 action news, sat down with the Free Press’ Dave Birkett who is already in Las Vegas for the draft.

When Galli asked Birkett who he believes the Lions will be taking at number two overall, Birkett responded, “Look, if you believe the rumors that Travon Walker is going number one, and that is hot and heavy right now in NFL circles, I think it has to be Aidan Hutchinson. To me, and to a lot of people in the league, he’s the best talent in the draft.”

Galli went on to ask Birkett if he thinks Holmes has any ‘surprises’ up his sleeve, to which Birkett answered, “I think this is going to be a draft full of surprises. Having talked to a number of NFL people over the last couple weeks, and in recent days, the common theme is to ‘expect the unexpected”.

I have heard many say it during the course of the draft cycle, but I struggle to remember another draft where there were this many questions this late in the game. And while it may leave members of NFL front offices tossing and turning in bed tonight, it should make for an interesting Thursday evening.

And now, onto the rest of today’s notes:

  • The Lions waived linebacker Curtis Bolton and tight end Hunter Bryant.

  • With tomorrow being the day, the Lions social media team gave us a chance to reminisce on a fun moment from last year. Let’s hope Brad Holmes feels this way after he makes his picks this year too.

  • The News’ Justin Rogers dropped his final mock draft.

  • Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press also dropped his preview ahead of the big weekend.

  • Pride of Detroit turned 16 today!