Detroit Lions general manager Bob Quinn was very excited for the opportunity to draft running back D’Andre Swift early in the second round in this year's NFL Draft.
The Lions view the rookie out of Georgia as an explosive playmaker with three-down value and a player who should be a terrific complement to veteran Kerryon Johnson and the rest of the backs.
Second-year offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell spoke to reporters earlier this week about the opportunity to add a weapon like Swift to his offense.
"We're super excited to have him," Bevell said. "We feel like he's a really talented, well-rounded running back. A guy that you can feel like can handle the run game, but as well as that, he has ability in the pass game where you can do some things with him there. So, really just a complete guy."
Bevell has talked often about wanting to be more balanced on offense and to be a more consistent rushing football team – Detroit ranked 21st in rushing last season – but it's also important to note the backs also played an important role in the passing game in Bevell's first season as Detroit's OC in 2019.
Running back J.D. McKissic (now with Washington) was the team's fourth leading receiver with 34 receptions in mainly a third-down role. In all, Detroit running backs caught 76 passes on 101 targets.
Swift rushed for 1,049 yards in 2018 and came back with 1,218 yards in 2019. He averaged 6.6 yards (a Georgia record) on 440 rushing attempts and caught 73 passes for a 9.1 average per reception.
With the addition of Swift, the Lions seem to have a rather deep and versatile collection of backs. That should give Bevell a number of different options both in the run and pass games.
"To be able to add him in there with Kerryon, with Bo (Scarbrough) ... such a good group there and there's still other guys ... Ty (Johnson) is there," Bevell said. "It's going to be just a really competitive room and that's what you're trying to do at each and every position is get the room as competitive as you can and let the cream rise to the top and you'll end up with a really good team when you're doing that."
Though there's no depth chart in the spring, Swift is the highest drafted running back the Lions have selected since taking Jahvid Best 30th overall in 2010. He's expected to be a big part of their plan of offense, and will hopefully help to bring more balance to Detroit's offense.
"Again, super good player, super talented and I think you're able to do a lot of things with him," Bevell said of Swift. "He can handle as much as you want to give him."