In the days leading up to training camp, the Detroit Lions have made an intriguing addition to their coaching staff. Former Ohio State quarterback J.T. Barrett has been hired as an offensive assistant, the team announced on Saturday.
Barrett’s playing career just recently came to an end. After going undrafted in 2018, Barrett spent a couple years on and off the New Orleans Saints roster—where he undoubtedly crossed paths with current Lions coaches Dan Campbell and Aaron Glenn. Most recently, Barrett signed a contract with the Edmonton Elks of the CFL back in January. Unfortunately, Barrett suffered a season-ending injury in March and officially retired from his playing football career.
Interestingly enough, while in college Barrett was asked if he would ever consider a career in coaching after his playing days were over. His response?
“A coach?” Barrett said. “No, I don’t see that.”
It seems he’s had a change of heart.
At Ohio State, Barrett was a four-year starter, throwing for 9,434 yards and 104 touchdowns, while adding another 43 scores on the ground. He finished fifth in Heisman voting in his freshman year, despite his season coming to an end early due to a broken ankle. At the NFL level, he did not make a single game appearance in three seasons.
Barrett joins a Lions coaching staff full of former NFL players, including Campbell, Glenn, Duce Staley, Mark Brunell, Hank Fraley, Antwaan Randle El, Todd Wash, and Kelvin Sheppard.