For Jahmyr Gibbs, his ability to not only run the ball but also catch it well began in one of the most sacred of places for a developing football star—the backyard.
Brand new Detroit Lions running back says his pass catching skills began with a group of friends playing 7-on-7 in the backyard as he found himself also wanting to catch the ball.
“Throughout my football career I’ve played multiple positions like receiver, running back, and I played (defensive back) too—you gotta have hands to do that,” he said.
You sure do, and that’s what drew Lions general manager Brad Holmes and company to the young talent from Alabama. Gibbs, drafted by the Lions at 12th overall, spoke with Tim Twentyman about where his versatility comes from and how it’ll fit into this offense.
“I think they’re planning on using me almost the as they did at Alabama, probably a little more at wideout and stuff, running more routes, not just like goals and hitches and slants and stuff, probably more real receiver routes,” Gibbs said.
The Draft Network’s Justin Melo agrees. Here’s what he says you may see from the rookie:
“Expect Johnson to utilize Gibbs via wheel routes and option routes. Gibbs’ understanding of spacing and how to create separation will give him the upper hand against opposing linebackers. Johnson has the option to motion Gibbs out to a wide receiver alignment due to his refined nuance as a route-runner. Modern-day NFL offenses are constantly searching for mismatch opportunities. Gibbs will provide plenty.”
Last season, Gibbs rushed for 926 yards on 151 carries and ran in seven touchdowns, while catching 44 passes for 444 yards and three touchdowns. He finished second in Crimson Tide single-season history for catches by a running back.
“Gibbs should be most effective when paired alongside a back like (David) Montgomery that can handle the dirty work. It’s precisely why Holmes identified Gibbs as Montgomery’s change-of-pace partner. Expectations are high for the Lions and they became higher when they drafted an immediate contributor in Gibbs,” Melo writes.
In the rest of this episode of “Twentyman in the Huddle,” Gibbs recaps his draft night experience and new Lions linebacker Jack Campbell also stops by to explain what he’ll bring to Detroit. Watch the whole thing below:
And onto the rest of your notes.
- “The Lions are going for it. If that wasn’t clear before, it should be now.” The Athletic’s Colton Pouncy and Nick Baumgardner put all their thoughts together to make sense of this wild Lions draft. ($)
- This is well deserved, but I think that goes without saying.
Thank you to the @PFWAwriters for nominating @LionsPR as a Pete Rozelle Award finalist for the 2nd-consecutive year. And major congrats to MIN, DAL, MIA and PIT on their well-deserved nominations!— Eamonn Reynolds (@Eamonn_Reynolds) May 1, 2023
Honored to call @kingSol620 @Gom1094 @ellieecross & @ellentrudell teammates. pic.twitter.com/k9Dcax0cCq
- “The most important piece of the draft process is making sure that a prospect fits a team’s scheme and culture.” One player in particular made Bucky Brooks’ list of top 10 perfect player-team fits.
- “I really don’t get the post-draft hate for Detroit that I’ve seen in some circles. Sure, it was a windy road on Night 1. But Lions GM Brad Holmes ended up with two terrific football players.” More Lions love—this time from NFL.com’s Adam Schein.
- Tracy Walker and Dearborn Mayor Abdullah H. Hammoud tour the Arab American National Museum together:
To acknowledge Arab American Heritage Month in April, @TracyWalkerIII, along with with Mayor Abdullah H. Hammoud, took a special tour of the Arab American National Museum, located right here in Dearborn, MI.@ArabAmericanMus @AHammoudMI pic.twitter.com/iAh5UCEd92— Detroit Lions (@Lions) May 1, 2023
- Can Detroit beat that? I think it can.
NFL Draft Attendance:— Front Office Sports (@FOS) May 1, 2023
2015, Chicago: 200,000
2016, Chicago: 225,000
2017, Philadelphia: 250,000
2018, Dallas: 200,000
2019, Nashville: 600,000
2021, Cleveland: 160,000
2022, Las Vegas: 300,000
2023, Kansas City: 312,000pic.twitter.com/TfhPrF4kRb
- Jeremy has a comprehensive list of draft grades from around the media world, but here’s another from CBS Sports’ Pete Prisco, and a good one.
- Say what you want about Brad Holmes, the man has style: