Detroit Lions: 30 Best Draft Picks in Team History

4 of 31

Embed from Getty Images

28.  Fred Biletnikoff (wide receiver) – Before Charlie Sanders, Herman Moore, and Calvin Johnson, the Detroit Lions had another receiving gem in their organization. His name was Fred Biletnikoff.

Biletnikoff was chosen by the Detroit Lions, with the 39th overall selection (3rd round) of the 1965 NFL draft. But he never signed with the Lions, opting instead to join the Oakland Raiders, after being selected 11th overall in the 1965 AFL draft.

The Lions again missed out on a Hall Of Fame talent, as Biletnikoff went on to have a storied career with Oakland (fourteen seasons).

Biletnikoff finished his career with 589 receptions, 8,974 yards receiving, and 76 touchdowns.

He was selected to the pro bowl six times, and became a Super Bowl champion, as well as Super Bowl MVP, in 1977 at Super Bowl XI.

Biletnikoff flourished, helped revolutionize the receiver position, and compiled gaudy numbers, even while playing all but one of his seasons during the time of 14 game seasons.

His mark of 10 straight seasons of 40 or more receptions is still a record to this day.

While the Detroit Lions have a rich history of standout receivers, it could have been a bit richer if Biletnikoff had spent his career with them.

Next: Number 27