The Detroit Lions have hired Brad Holmes to fill the organization’s general manager vacancy.
Detroit, we have a new general manager in town. Brad Holmes, the Director of College Scouting for the Los Angeles Rams, was named the new general manager of the Detroit Lions. After a lengthy interview process that began in early December, the Lions settled on their hire on Thursday.
They brought in 12 candidates for the general manager position alone, but after Holmes second interview, they offered him the job. Holmes spent 18 years in the Rams organization going back to their time in Saint Louis, where he started as a public relations intern in 2003.
He rose quickly through the ranks of the Rams and was named Director of College Scouting in 2013. The Rams can accredit a lot of their current day, and even recent success to him, based on the way he scouted and the gems he has found despite the lack of a first-round pick the past four drafts.
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In fact, 12 of the Rams’ starters were drafted in the third round or later. Wait, just when you thought that the draft success couldn’t get any better, Rams General Manager (GM) Les Snead was quoted saying that Holmes had a significant hand in the draft choices of Jared Goff and one Aaron Donald.
A franchise quarterback and arguably the best player in the entire league are nothing to scoff at when it comes to draft selections.
His acumen with his eye for talent earned him some high praise, even some comparison to the great Ozzie Newsome, from running backs coach Wilbert Montgomery.
Holmes drafting ability is definitely an eyesore for Lions fans who crave nothing more than to have draft selections actually turn out well.
After draft choices such as Jarrad Davis, Teez Tabor, and Jahlani Tavai, to name a few, all of which were non-factors for the Lions last season. Tabor is even out of the league currently. Fans want to draft choices that succeed and will be high on the list for them as well as the owners, in order for Holmes to gain approval and gain it quickly.
There will be two major choices that Holmes will have to take this offseason as well. One choice, and one that we will see very soon, is the hiring of a head coach. As of right now, it seems like there are a few clear-cut front-runners.
With the Detroit Lions hiring of Brad Holmes, take a look at some head-coaching candidates.
Those would be Arthur Smith, Dan Campbell, and Marvin Lewis, with Darrell Bevell not too far behind. Let’s start with the latter and go through the rest. With Bevell, you’re getting an established rapport within the locker room, with an offensive mind to lead the team.
However, Bevell really has not been an intriguing coaching candidate outside of Detroit and is not as much of a leader as one would hope. With Lewis, the Lions would be getting an established head coach who would probably walk in the door with the locker room’s respect.
Based on who he is as a coach and a person, as well as a defensive mind that could help turn around a defensive unit that was among the worst in the NFL, Lewis is one of the top candidates. The third candidate, many people have not heard of; however, his resume is pretty solid nonetheless.
Dan Campbell, New Orleans Saints assistant head coach and tight ends coach, has been rumored as a favorite within the Lions building, as many front office members have taken a liking to him. Campbell would provide leadership and voice within the locker room, similar to a Mike Vrabel in Tennessee situation.
Considering the success Vrabel and the Titans have had, that is not a bad proposition considering what Lions fans saw the past three seasons. Last but not least, and considered the current front runner, is Titans offensive coordinator Arthur Smith.
Smith revived an offense, and more importantly, a quarterback in Ryan Tannehill, and built a scheme around that team that succeeded. Should the Detroit Lions decide to keep Matthew Stafford and hire Smith to be the coach, I would definitely count on a much improved season next year.
Two “dark horse” prospects to consider would be Rams defensive coordinator Brendan Staley, who had a strong relationship with Holmes in Los Angeles, and former Eagles head coach Doug Pederson, who brings a Super Bowl-winning resume that could bode well amongst the Detroit fans who are dying for a winner. Remember, with Pederson, a majority of his roster was injured throughout this season and one year removed from the playoffs.
The second major choice for Holmes will be what to do with offensive playmakers Stafford and wide receiver Kenny Golladay. While Stafford does have a pretty pricey cap hit should he be traded or cut by the Lions, trading him would mean a true rebuild, under Holmes’s vision.
While that may not be a future some fans would agree with, Stafford has done beyond enough for Detroit, the best we could do is allow him to succeed elsewhere and win. A quarterback of Stafford’s pedigree would most certainly be worth a first-round pick, if not two, which would really aid the Lions in a rebuild.
As for Golladay, he is a Uber-talented receiver who could really provide an experienced weapon should a new quarterback take the helm. Candidates to look for in terms of a quarterback could be Justin Fields, Zach Wilson, Trey Lance, or even Alabama’s Mac Jones. All provide a solid argument as to why they belong, and all are extremely talented.
Altogether, the hire, while an interesting one, seems to be a strong decision made in good conscience while Sheila Hamp Ford looks to right a ship and end years of losing for this struggling Detroit Lions franchise.