ALLEN PARK — The Detroit Lions traded three third-day picks (122, 138 and 168) late Friday to the Arizona Cardinals to move up to 96th to draft defensive tackle Brodric Martin who played at Western Kentucky.
Martin, who is 6-foot-5 and 337 pounds, is the first defensive lineman in this draft for the Lions and the third defensive player.
“I’m glad to be a part of this organization. I’m not surprised but I’m blessed (to be picked on Day 2),’’ Martin said on a Zoom call on Friday night.
He had a Top 30 visit with the Lions.
“Just talking with (Dan Campbell), he gave me a sense of confidence. I (also) talked to the D-line coaches. They’re the kind of coaches I want to be coached by,’’ said Martin who noted he could play anywhere along the defensive line.
He started his college career at Division II North Alabama and transferred to Western Kentucky for the 2021 season. That was a tough time for him because his 27-year-old brother, Brandon Martin, died of leukemia that October.
As a senior in 2022, he earned honorable mention All-Conference USA honors, starting all 14 appearances (31 tackles, 1.5 sacks, two pass breakups).
His NFL.com draft prospect bio read: “Space-eating nose tackle for consideration in both odd and even fronts. Martin’s size and length will be coveted by NFL teams, but his impact on games can be blunted at times due to a lack of leverage to hold his anchor. If he can play with a little better bend and quicker hands, he has the awareness and ability to handle two-gapping duties. He can take on double teams with better technique and more work. Martin’s traits and talent create Day 3 draft value as a rotational interior lineman.’’
After a day of trades, the Lions are left with just two picks on Saturday — 152nd and 249th.