Josh Paschal was a surprise pick for the Detroit Lions. Having already spent the second overall pick on Aidan Hutchinson, going back to another defensive lineman was not expected from Brad Holmes and company.
But the deeper you dug on Paschal, the more obvious it became that Paschal is exactly what the Lions are looking for. He’s a relentless player with a ton of versatility on the field and an inspirational leader off it. As Holmes said on the Lions’ fantastic behind-the-scenes video in the draft war room, Paschal has “elite intangibles” and “elite character.”
So to get some stories about Paschal and the amazing player and person he was at Kentucky, we chatted for a half-hour with Kentucky Sports Radio’s Nick Roush.
Roush provided a bunch of awesome stories about how Paschal forged out a leadership role and became a more vocal leader as his career evolved as Kentucky’s first and only three-time captain.
Then conversation shifted to what Paschal can bring on the field. Roush thinks, thanks to his versatile use at Kentucky, he’s going to fit perfectly with what Detroit’s defense is trying to be.
“He has the athleticism to stand up in a 3-4, but he’s at his best being that kind of 5-technique defensive end,” Roush explained. “And then using that in zone blitzes, where he can kind of back off and jump a (passing) lane, a little drag route or something in the flats, especially in twists. Coming from the outside in, he has enough meat on his chicken wings to withstand that.”
Roush also brings a little insight into the injury Paschal fought through at Kentucky to give some background on what the rookie may be dealing with right now.
“I think it was like a hernia/groin,” Roush said. “I don’t know if he had surgery or not on it, but he was good enough to do the combine stuff. I hope he didn’t re-aggravate it.”
You can listen to our very insightful conversation with Roush below, and you can follow Roush on Twitter here.
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