Wright talks re-signing with Lions, his path to the NFL

There will be players who don’t hear their names called next Thursday, Friday or Saturday when the NFL Draft takes place in Detroit.

Detroit Lions place TE Brock Wright on COVID list; LB Josh Woods to injured  reserve - mlive.com

Lions veteran tight end Brock Wright was one of those players who went undrafted out of Notre Dame in 2021. He was a blocking tight end who caught just seven passes in four seasons for the Fighting Irish and he knew it was going to be a long shot for him to be drafted.

“Our exit interviews at the end of the year I was talking with (offensive coordinator) Ben Johnson and he said, ‘Man, don’t you think that picking Detroit was the best decision you’ve ever made in your life in unrestricted free agency?’ I’ve said that multiple times now. By far it’s one of the best decisions I’ve ever made.”

The one benefit of not being drafted is those players are free to sign with whichever team they want at the conclusion of the draft. Wright signed with Detroit and made the practice squad out of training camp. He was elevated to the active roster Week 7 and caught a couple touchdown passes as a rookie.

He’s developed into one of the better blocking tight ends in the league with speed and playmaking ability in the passing game. It culminated with Wright signing a three-year, $12 million restricted free agent offer sheet with the San Francisco 49ers in free agency this offseason, an offer sheet the Lions matched to retain his services.

Wright said it was a nervous and exciting time waiting for the Lions to use their five-day window to match the 49ers’ offer. Wright joked when speaking to reporters today that he started to look at housing in San Francisco and was shocked by the price per square foot. He said the Lions matched the offer with just two and a half hours left in their window to do so.

From undrafted free agent to a $12 million contract offer in three seasons, Wright is a great example for all the players next week who might feel the disappointment of not being drafted.

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