After scooping up Aiden Hutchinson No. 2 overall, the Detroit Lions made a bold move up for an offensive weapon.
The Lions traded pick Nos. 32, 34 and 66 to the Minnesota Vikings for pick Nos. 12 and 46.
With the No. 12 overall pick, the Lions drafted Alabama wide receiver Jameson Williams in the 2022 NFL Draft on Thursday night.
Minnesota closed out the first-round festivities Thursday night with the selection of Georgia defensive back Lewis Cine.
Williams suffered an ACL tear in the College Football Playoff National Championship Game, but he hasn't experienced any setbacks and is recovering well. Clearly, the Lions have no issues with the medical situation to move up to swipe the speedster.
Williams' story is a tale of a successful bet on oneself. The receiver spent most of his college days sitting behind the pair of Ohio State stars, Garrett Wilson (pick No. 10) and Chris Olave (11), and decided to leave Columbus for one last shot to prove his capability in a better situation. He found that in Tuscaloosa with the Crimson Tide, where Williams joined John Metchie and quickly became an explosive weapon for Alabama, earning first-team All-American and first-team All-SEC honors in 2021.
Williams track speed is a unique, difference-making trait.
The Lions needed a big-time playmaker, particularly one with speed to pair with last year's fourth-rounder Amon-Ra St. Brown. Adding Williams could be that home run threat that allows Brown to eat underneath.
With the Lions in the nascent stages of a rebuild, they can take it slow with Williams and don't need to force him back on the field quickly. This is a pick for the future of Dan Campbell's squad.
While many projected the Lions to snag a quarterback with the No. 32 overall pick, instead, Detroit packaged their 30s picks to move up for a potentially game-changing receiver. It's Jared Goff's team in 2022. The Lions will likely look for their future QB in 2023, which is projected to be a better signal-caller draft.