Detroit Lions: 30 Best Draft Picks in Team History

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12.  Alex Karras (defensive lineman) – Every good draft picks list should include a true tough guy, and Alex Karras was one talented tough guy.  Karras was an integral part of the Lions “Fearsome Foursome” defensive line, along with Roger Brown, Darris McCord, and Sam Williams.

His violent hands, powerful build, and arsenal of moves, allowed him to regularly send opposing backfields into chaos, quarterbacks running for their lives, and opposing offensive linemen falling every which way.

The Lions selected Karras in the first round of the 1958 NFL draft (10th overall).  Before Karras played a down for the Lions, he signed a  professional wrestling contract.  But eventually (that same offseason), he signed with the Lions, and he quickly turned into a dominant force along Detroit’s line.

Karras played in a time, before sacks were an official statistic, but he regularly reigned havoc on opposing offenses.  He still holds the team record for career fumble recoveries (with 17), and three times he helped lead the Lions defense to allow the 2nd least points per game (in 1962, 1969, and 1970 respectively).

Not only did Karras play at a high level, he also played (pretty much) all the time.  In his twelve NFL seasons, and even though he was an aggressive player, playing in the trenches, Karras only missed one game due to injury.

Karras put the “fear” in “fearsome foursome”, as anyone who saw him play, or rather played against him, will tell you.

Next: Number 11