ALLEN PARK — Jahmyr Gibbs was welcomed to Detroit by a couple of Hall of Famers, Barry Sanders and Calvin Johnson.
Gibbs, the Detroit Lions first pick in the draft at 12th overall, was flown to Detroit on Friday to get a look at his new home.
Quiet and understated, he stood at the podium and fielded questions with short answers.
Again he said he was shocked that he was drafted at 12th, because he’s a running back he expected to go later. But, said he’s happy to become a Lion and thinks he’ll be a good fit.
“I can see myself making plays,’’ Gibbs said.
He’ll join David Montgomery and D’Andre Swift in the running backs room. Gibbs is a plug-and-play back who is expected to have an immediate impact. Lions GM Brad Holmes said Swift is still on the roster although there has been speculation about a possible trade.
Gibbs noted his versatility with the ability to catch passes and return kicks.
Last season at Alabama he carried 151 times for 926 yards (6.1 yards per carry) and seven rushing touchdowns. He also caught 44 passes for 444 yards and three passing TDs. He was a transfer from Georgia Tech where he played his first two college seasons.
Gibbs grew up in Dalton, Ga., and was raised by a single grandmother. At one point in 2010 they were living in a shelter. It was a tough life at times, he often would stay at the homes of high school teammates. It’s been a long and winding road to Detroit.
When asked about his early struggles, Gibbs said, “I would say I wouldn’t change a thing.”