The Detroit Lions Draft Nick Bawden In The 7th Round Of The 2018 NFL Draft.
The Detroit Lions dedication to improving the running game continued into the seventh round of the 2018 NFL draft. The team corrected one of their 2017 mistakes. They did so, by drafting fullback Nick Bawden with the 237th pick of the draft. Bawden was a key member of the San Diego State Aztecs rushing attack. He was one of the key blockers involved in Rashaad Penny‘s incredible success in 2017.
Why the Detroit Lions drafted Nick Bawden
Bawden is a 6’2″ 245 lbs with solid speed for an H-back, and soft hands in addition to his blocking acumen. Bawden was medically ineligible for the NFL combine. He was found to have a tiny fracture in a non-weight bearing bone in his ankle. His pro day workouts were impressive. Impressive enough to convince the Lions that he was worth a seventh-round pick in the draft. Bawden is not the player that his position and measurables might lead you to believe. He went to San Diego State as a quarterback. He has an understanding of blocking schemes and reading defenses that most fullbacks lack.
Since Detroit Lions general manager Bob Quinn declared that the team’s running game needed to be fixed, he has drafted two offensive linemen and two running backs in an effort to ensure that it improves. Quinn has certainly been aggressive in addressing the team’s needs as he sees them.
Fullback is one of the few positions an NFL team can hope to find immediate help in the seventh round of the NFL draft. Nick Bowden was very likely the pick that most improved the team’s performance in the 2018 season. The Lions run scheme under former offensive line coach Ron Prince did not use a fullback. At least it used one so little that the Lions opted to go without one on the roster for the 2017 season. We do not know exactly what the Lions running game is going to look like, but we know it will be very different in 2018. Considering the team was 32nd in the NFL in rushing yardage and yards per carry. Literally, any change they make is for the better.