Lions general manager Holmes excited about team leadership

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Detroit Lions general manager Brad Holmes said the work was just beginning.

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Speaking to the media on Tuesday, there were a lot of things Holmes loved about his debut season with the Lions, but also the reality, a 3-13-1 record left the team 31st in the NFL at 32 teams.

“The reality is we’ve won three games and it’s not good enough and it never will be,” said Holmes.

But Holmes is also thrilled with the way the team has progressed in their debut season under head coach Dan Campbell. After losing their first eight games, the club went 3-5-1 down the home stretch and that was with 15 players – including some key starters – sidelined for the season due to injury.

“At the end of the day, we laid the groundwork,” Holmes said. “Now, you know, sometimes it’s hard to be patient with sticking to the plan, but it’s a multi-year plan. It’s for lasting success and I think we’ve laid the groundwork.

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“We’ve been through tough stuff and I was kind of saying it all year, we’re going through these tough stuff, but I’ll say at this point the groundwork is laid. We still have work to do. We’re not neglecting that, but we’re excited for the next phase of this trip in the coming offseason and everything will be better than this time last year.

While there were several key injuries to overcome, it allowed the Lions to have six of the team’s seven 2021 draft picks in the starting lineup at one point. Undrafted free agents – cornerbacks Jerry Jacobs and AJ Parker as well as tight end Brock Wright, kicker Riley Patterson, guard Tommy Kraemer, center Ryan McCollum – have all started at some point in the season.

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“A lot, we had no choice at times,” said Holmes. “I say, when we’ve been hit by adversity, whether it’s injuries or whatever, hey listen, I have a – let’s call that free agent advice available with veterans who would be available for. come help. You know what, we stuck to our plan. We let these young people play and gain valuable experience.

This group not only gained experience, but also set the bar for the future.

“We’re always going to find guys that fit,” Holmes said of future roster additions. “No matter what resources we have, we’re always going to find guys who are aligned, who really match who we are.”

More experienced and with time to get the ball rolling, Holmes expects this offseason to be a big improvement for the team of coaching staff coaching the Senior Bowl as their staff have more time to prepare for. the NFL Draft – where the team planned to choose twice in the first round – and to master free will.

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“Free agency will be better, we will have a little more resources at our disposal,” Holmes said. “The draft will be even better. I thought our draft was good, but it will be better.

“We have a little more capital so we’re very excited about it, starting the next phase of this journey. We will be coaching the Senior Bowl, so that will be a good starting point to observe the guys and our overall process.

“We are so far ahead in our overall process that a year ago, whether in terms of free agency, draft preparation, all that. We are in a much better position.

“Again, I can’t say enough about it. It’s a serious group and I’m excited about what’s to come.

jpparker@postmedia.com

twitter.com/winstarparker

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