The Detroit Lions kept the possibility of adding a quarterback via the 2023 NFL Draft open for weeks. In the third round, the Lions added that quarterback, and it's one of the draft's more polarizing prospects.
The Lions drafted Tennessee signal-caller Hendon Hooker with the 68th pick on Friday. Detroit acquired the 68th pick through a trade with the Denver Broncos at the end of the second round.
Hooker was a star in 2022 for the Tennessee Volunteers. He threw for 3135 yards, 31 touchdowns, and three interceptions in his final collegiate season. Tennessee was one of the best teams in the country at the time.
However, Hooker's season ended early when he tore his ACL. That injury is one of many concerns the new Lions quarterback dealt with throughout the draft process.
Many evaluators had concerns regarding his age. Hooker turned 25 years old in January and will be 26 at the end of the 2023 season. To compare, Lions starter Jared Goff will turn 29 years old in October.
Many also had concerns about the system he played in while in college. The belief is that Tennessee doesn't run a pro-style system, creating concerns for how Hooker's skills translate to the NFL.
The Lions made hooker the oldest quarterback drafted since 2012. That year, the Cleveland Browns selected Brandon Weeden with the 22nd overall pick. Weeden was 28 years old at the time of his selection.
Hooker certainly won't start for the Lions in 2023. Goff has that job locked down. However, he could be an option down the line, despite the risks involved. Only time will tell if Detroit's gamble pays off.