ALLEN PARK — Frank Ragnow couldn’t be more excited to be a Detroit Lion.
His excitement was evident at an introductory press conference late on Friday afternoon.
He started by saying, “I’m Frank Ragnow and I’m so, so excited to be here.”
The offensive lineman was bear-hugged by coach Matt Patricia as he took the podium to take questions.
“He’s amazing, you can tell he really has passion for football and I think I’m the same way. I’m just so, so excited to play for such a brilliant football mind and such a great coach,’’ Ragnow said.
Here are seven things to know about Ragnow:
1. He got a congratulatory text from Matthew Stafford on Friday morning and was so much in awe that he called him “Mr. Stafford.” The quarterback would have none of that. Stafford told him he was happy to have him on board and is excited to win some ball games with him. Stafford should be thrilled to get more protection on the offensive line. It’s unclear whether Ragnow will play at center or left guard.
2. Finishing — putting another man on his back against his will — is his favorite part of the game. “I’ve always taken pride in — you can control, you control your work ethic. Your finishing isn’t going to be about your talent, it’s not about your athleticism, it’s about your want-to and that’s what you can control,’’ Ragnow said.
3. He played for Arkansas so faced amazing talent weekly. He remembers going against his new teammate A’Shawn Robinson who played for Alabama. “I remember he looked 40,’’ Ragnow said. Nailed it.
4. Ragnow was genuinely surprised to be drafted by the Lions who had interviewed him at the NFL Draft Combine and had not talked to him since. “That was really early in the process, you didn’t know anything. It was pretty cool just getting to interview with all the teams. Now I’m a Detroit Lion and I couldn’t be more excited,’’ said Ragnow who grew up in Minnesota as a Vikings fan.
5. He is admittedly a football junky so knew quite a bit about the Lions offensive line. He tried not to pay attention to the plethora of mock drafts. “When you’ve got Facebook and a mother who’s very proud and trying to tag you in everything and trying to show you everything sometimes you can’t avoid it,’’ Ragnow said. “I tried to stay away from it and keep a level head.’’
6. His senior season ended prematurely due to an ankle injury which required surgery. It’s fine now and he cannot wait to get on the football field. “The draft process is a long process especially toward the end here it’s a lot of waiting, a lot of wondering,’’ Ragnow said. “And when you’re training you’re training to run a 40-yard dash which I don’t plan on doing that every again.’’
7. He’s a fisherman so is thrilled to be moving to the Detroit area for obvious reasons. “There’s some great fishing and hunting around here, I’m happy to be here,” Ragnow said. His best fishing buddy was his dad Jon, who died of a heart attack in 2016. He grew up in Minnesota and his family has a fishing cabin in Canada.