Bob Quinn has said on numerous occasions since taking over as Lions general manager that he's a big believer in building a football team from the inside out.
His approach to the draft last year and free agency this offseason is a perfect example of that vision. Quinn signed five offensive linemen, including starters Taylor Decker and Graham Glasgow, in his first draft. He then upgraded two spots along the offensive line in free agency this year with the signings of T.J. Lang and Rick Wagner. He also added three defensive linemen – Akeem Spence, Cornelius Washington and Jordan Hill – via free agency this season.
"I'm a big believer in building your team through the offensive and defensive lines, and he's a guy who doesn't mess around with that, obviously, with what he's done the last couple of days," Lang told 97.1 in a recent interview.
View photos of the Detroit Lions roster.
Lang said he was very impressed with Quinn after visiting with him early in the free agency process. Lang would eventually choose to sign with Detroit over Seattle and Green Bay, where he played his first eight seasons.
"We sat and we talked football for a couple hours Thursday night when I went over to visit and he just seemed like such a down-to-earth guy," Lang said of Quinn "You can see the vision that he has for this football team and for the organization. Obviously growing up in the area (Lang is a Royal Oak native), I think people around here haven't seen in a long time. And he's getting things done."
Lang won a Super Bowl in Green Bay, and said that was the expectation at the beginning of every season. It wasn't making the playoffs or winning a playoff game. It was world title or bust.
That's a culture Quinn is trying to foster in Detroit, according to Lang. Like Lang, Quinn certainly knows it well after spending 16 years in New England.
While Quinn was working in New England, the Patriots won four Super Bowl titles, six AFC Championships, 13 AFC East titles and won 12-plus games in a season 10 times.
"Just talking football with him, talking about being in the city of Detroit and being back home and where he really wants to get the program to, they're not just talking about, 'Well we want to get to the playoffs,'" Lang said. "They've done that the last couple years.
"I think everybody's going from, 'Let's get a playoff win,' to 'Let's start competing for championships.' That's all I've known coming from Green Bay for eight years and it's really going to be special to be a part of that."