No one happier about Aaron Glenn’s return to Lions than Dan Campbell

Lions defensive coordinator Aaron Glenn thinks he has the best job in the world working for coach Dan Campbell. And no one is happier than Campbell that Glenn has returned for this coming season.

Glenn interviewed in the spring for the head coaching opening with the New Orleans Saints but they instead opted for Dennis Allen.

That’s when Campbell breathed a huge sigh of relief.

“When all of this was going on with New Orleans, I thought that he was going to be gone. I was going to be happy as hell for him, I would. But the thought of losing him, I just had this feeling like I was going to be walking around without any pants on. Not having A.G. — there is a comfort level,’’ Campbell said on Thursday.

Glenn laughed when told about the no-pants comment.

“Well, we want to make sure he keeps his pants on. He’s one of my closest friends, I’m sure we’ll have some conversations about that,’’ Glenn said.

Glenn was involved in the NFL’s diversity coaching program in Atlanta last week where he got a chance to talk with NFL owners perhaps for future employment.

“I have a tremendous amount of trust and confidence in A.G. he is more than worthy of being a head coach, he’s more than qualified to be a head coach in this league. We’re fortunate to have him as our D.C.,’’ Campbell said.

While he wanted the Saints head coaching job, Glenn was excited to remain in Detroit.

“I think I have the best job in the world, I really do. I’m working for an outstanding head coach, I’m working for an outstanding owner, an outstanding president, with really good people in the building to work with,’’ Glenn said. “I want to be the best coordinator Detroit has ever had, I’m going to stand by that and continue to say that because I believe that in my heart. If the head coaching deal happens, it happens but for right now I think I have an outstanding job. I really do.’’

Lions rookie Aidan Hutchinson impresses early

While it is early in the process, Detroit Lions’  first-round pick Aidan Hutchinson seems to making the transition to the pros smoothly.

“Here is my initial read: everything that we thought we were getting shows up, not just in practice but in the meeting room also. … He has this quickness that is unbelievable,’’ defensive coordinator Aaron Glenn said.

Naturally all eyes were on the rookie defensive end who impressed on the third day of OTAs on Thursday. He notched a pair of sacks during two-minute drills. Again, there is a long way to go, but so far so good.

Hutch was known for his work ethic at Michigan and he lost none of that on his way east to Allen Park.

“Just watch him, he’s always working. It’s that relentless attitude you guys see when he was at Michigan that made him so successful and it’s natural for him,’’ Glenn said. “There’s no doubt in my mind this player is  going to be a really really good player for us. I’m executed to see once we get in training camp and get in the games for us.’’

Hutchinson will work daily against the Lions’ offensive line, which if it remains healthy, is solid. Left tackle Taylor Decker, who is sitting out while his foot heals, said on Thursday that it’s the most talented line since he’s been in Detroit. 

Coach Dan Campbell expects Hutchinson’s biggest transition will be the physical part — adapting to the speed of the game and the types of tackles he will face.

“I’ve said before this is where I think Hutch is going to have a big advantage is he’s going to have to go against (Penei) Sewell and Decker every day. I think that’s huge. I think that will play more into his development than a lot of other things … I think it can excel his progression,’’ Campbell said.

Hutchinson is 6-foot-7 and 260 pounds and Campbell is happy with is strength but sees better things ahead.

“He’s got a ton of room to get more powerful, if you would. His strength is good enough to go out and compete no problems there, but yet, man, there’s still a ton of meat on the bone with him. That’s pretty exciting,’’ Campbell said.

The interview with Campbell was prior to Thursday’s OTA session. 

“You can never tell for sure but I would say (strength) is one of the reasons we wanted to pick this guy — his DNA says he’s going to do everything that he can to be successful and he’s got enough ability and enough strength, he certainly does, to go out and help us and help us win some games,’’ Campbell said. “How fast will that be? I don’t know. I know this we’re not going to put him out there until he’s ready. He’s going to have to show that to us. We’ll see how it goes.’’

Lions draft DE Josh Paschal in second round

Josh Paschal, a defensive end, was the Lions’ second-round pick (46th overall) in the NFL draft on Friday night.

Paschal, who is 6-foot-3 and 268 pounds, played four seasons at Kentucky, playing in all 13 games as a true freshman in 2017. He was a captain for three seasons.

“It just means that I was blessed enough to be around a lot of great leaders and they helped me become the leader I am. I’m a guy who can change locker rooms,’’ Paschal said in a virtual media briefing on Friday night. “That’s my goal is to come in and learn from the veterans and also step into a leadership role as well.’’

He red-shirted his junior year while undergoing treatment for malignant melanoma which included multiple surgeries and a year of immunotherapy on the bottom of his right foot. He said the experience made him cherish his blessings.

Paschal has the ability to play in odd or even fronts.

“Versatility is one of the basics of my game. I move all across the front, I am not sure what coach (Todd) Wash and coach (Aaron) Glenn have planned, whatever it is I’ll give my all and I’m very versatile so whatever it is I’ll be able to pick it up,” Paschal said. 

His formal interview with the Lions took place at the NFL Combine.

“I met Dan Campbell, coach Wash, coach Glenn, I met them all there. We hit it off, we watched some film, we talked about ball and life. Instantly I knew it’d be a great fit,’’ Paschal said.

He’s the second defensive end drafted by the Lions in their top four picks. Detroit drafted Aidan Hutchinson, a Michigan defensive end, with the second overall pick.

Paschal said the two met at the Combine.

An NFL.com draft profile of Paschal said: “He’s like a block of granite at the point of attack with low pads and a heavy anchor. He has the twitch to see-and-shed against single blocks and the range to make a tackle a gap away. His face-up rush style lacks elusiveness and will see limited success off the edge, but his snap quickness fits perfectly as an interior rusher in sub-packages. Paschal might never be a star, but he’s a good future starter with winning character that coaches and fans will grow to love.’’

He started all 13 games in 2019 (34 tackles, 9.5 for loss with 3.5 sacks, two forced fumbles) and 10 of 11 games played in 2020 (32 tackles, 6.5 for loss). He finished his career on a high note, earning second-team All-SEC and Academic All-American honors while leading the Wildcats with 15.5 tackles for loss, including 5.5 sacks among his 53 total tackles, in 12 starts. Paschal opted out of the team’s bowl game to prepare for the NFL draft, per NFL.com.