All over the country on Wednesday, high school and junior college players will officially commit to colleges hoping those choices will eventually lead them to the NFL.
But what about today’s NFL players? Where were they ranked? Where did they go? Every year we look at the final Detroit Lions roster of the season and break down the recruiting rankings of the players who made up the Lions that season.
Here is the offense. From the Class of 2006 forward, the rankings are ESPN’s. Others are from Rivals.com. The roster used was Detroit’s final 53-man roster and injured reserve for 2015.
Matthew Stafford (Class of 2006): No. 1 quarterback; No. 5 overall player. Signed with Georgia.
Dan Orlovsky (2001): The Hartford Courant reported at the time of Orlovsky’s commitment he was a three-star recruit by Rivals.com. He signed with Connecticut.
Joique Bell (2005): Not listed in Rivals rankings for 2005. Signed with Wayne State.
Ameer Abdullah (2011): No. 128 running back, No. 531 player in the Southeast in 2011. Rivals had him as the No. 17 athlete and No. 9 player in Alabama. Signed with Nebraska.
Theo Riddick (2009): No. 48 athlete; No. 65 player in the northeast region.
George Winn (2008): He was the No. 100 running back in his class. Signed with Cincinnati.
Zach Zenner (2010): In the ESPN database but not rated. Signed with South Dakota State.
Michael Burton (2010): Not in the ESPN database. Not ranked as an inside linebacker in the Rivals database. Walked on at Rutgers.
Calvin Johnson (2004): No. 6 wide receiver by Rivals.com and the No. 37 overall player. Signed with Georgia Tech.
Golden Tate (2007): The No. 2 wide receiver and No. 11 overall prospect in his class. He signed with Notre Dame.
Lance Moore (2001): No available rankings in either database.
Corey Fuller (2008): Not rated by Rivals or ESPN. Went to Kansas to run track before transferring to Virginia Tech, where his brothers played, for football.
TJ Jones (2010): No. 10 wide receiver and No. 68 player overall. Signed with Notre Dame.
Brandon Pettigrew (2004): Not ranked by Rivals.com, but was a two-star recruit. Signed with Oklahoma State.
Eric Ebron (2011): He was the No. 8 tight end in his class. He signed with North Carolina.
Tim Wright (2008): He was the No. 67 safety in his class by ESPN and the No. 42 athlete in his class from Rivals. He signed with Rutgers.
Bear Pascoe (2004): He was not rated by Rivals and was a two-star defensive tackle according to Scout. He committed to Fresno State.
Jordan Thompson (2008): He was the No. 92 tight end in his class. Signed with Ohio.
Riley Reiff (2008): Was the No. 84 defensive end in his class. Signed with Iowa.
Larry Warford (2009): The No. 51 guard in his class. Signed with Kentucky.
Cornelius Lucas (2009): He was unrated by ESPN in 2009. He was a two-star recruit by Rivals.com and the No. 52 player in Louisiana.
Travis Swanson (2009): He was the No. 91 guard in his class and the No. 199 player in the Midlands. Signed with Arkansas.
Manny Ramirez (2002): Rated as the No. 6 center in the nation by Rivals. Signed with Texas Tech.
Laken Tomlinson (2010): Rated as the No. 65 offensive guard. Signed with Duke.
Michael Ola (2006): Not rated by any services. Attended Hampton.
Corey Robinson (2010): Rated as the No. 56 offensive guard in his class. Signed with South Carolina.
Braxston Cave (2008): Rated as the No. 1 center in his class and the No. 126 player overall. Signed with Notre Dame.
Gabe Ikard (2009): Was the No. 19 tight end in the country, the No. 7 player in Oklahoma and the No. 67 player in the Midlands. Signed with Oklahoma.
Darren Keyton (2008): Not rated by ESPN and was a two-star recruit from Rivals. Committed to Central Michigan.