From Rivalry, to Allegiance

Embed from Getty Images

The Detroit Lions drafted Taylor Decker from Ohio State, and Graham Glasgow from Michigan in the 2016 NFL Draft. Both players were involved in a rivalry that is legendary. Now, they must push aside their college days and fight for the same team. From rivals to teammates, how can these two work out their differences? Let’s find out together.

How the rivalry began

Graham Glasgow and Taylor Decker have been involved in a rivalry for many years at the college level. Taylor Decker went to Ohio State for four seasons, won a Big Ten and National Championship in 2014, and never lost to Michigan. Graham Glasgow on the other hand, went to Michigan for five years and got to experience a win against the Buckeyes in 2011, a year before Decker was on the team, along with winning the Sugar Bowl in the same season. It’s Michigan vs Ohio State, the biggest rivalry in college sports and possibly in all of sports. The funny part about Glasgow and Decker being involved with the rivalry against each other? Glasgow almost went to Ohio State – he was recruited by the Buckeyes and planned on being a preferred walk-on, but with the change of coaches, Glasgow moved up north to Michigan as a walk-on.

Embed from Getty Images

Wait, are these guys actually friends?

You would think that when you play in a rivalry, you would hate the other team and everyone on it. A rivalry is something that sticks with you for your entire life.You’re taught at a young age, or as a freshman, to hate that team. You shouldn’t care what they say, what they think or what they do. Decker and Glasgow though, they don’t follow that stereotype and are good friends. Glasgow told the Lions “It’s actually funny that it’s Taylor (Decker) and I because we were out at the Combine together and he said, ‘You know, let’s get each others’ numbers,’ like he said that to me and a couple other guys, He was like ‘there’s a good chance maybe some of us will end up playing together’. Surely enough, it’s him and I. So, it’s kind of funny how that worked out.”

Here is what Decker had to say:

Embed from Getty Images

How can they help Detroit?

Well, Decker is an impressive left tackle. He can create holes for the running back and help give the quarterback time to throw. He could compete with Riley Reiff on the left side, or with Geoff Schwartz on the right side. Either way, Decker is a great addition to the offensive line that was ranked 21st in pass protection, and 26th in run blocking. Glasgow will have his own way of contributing to the team. He can play either guard or center,  the latter being where he played all 13 games last season. He will be competing mostly at center with Travis Swanson, but could also provide depth at all three positions if he is unable to win the starting job at center. If Detroit wants to move on from Larry Warford once his contract is up, Glasgow could fill that role as well.

Overall, both players have a great chance at starting next season. The rivalry will still exist between the two; I’m sure there will be bets of some sorts when their two Alma maters get together again in the future. This could be a lesson for everyone though, a rivalry doesn’t mean you can’t befriend those people on the opposite side of the field – you could end up being teammates with them in the end.

Thanks for reading! Don’t forget to follow me on Twitter @BKnappBlogs, find me on Reddit at /u/sportsguy4life and leave me your thoughts on the Detroit Lions subreddit.

More From The Detroit Lions Podcast

About the Author

Brandon Knapp
Brandon Knapp is a senior at Central Michigan University, majoring in Journalism, minoring in Sports Management. He was born and raised in the city of Marysville, MI. He also writes for and covers the Michigan Wolverines Football team (his other love). Brandon also enjoys watching the Detroit Red Wings, Pistons and Tigers.