The Detroit Lions have drafted 10 Heisman Trophy winners, which is more than any other franchise in the history of professional football.
So Detroit clearly has a historical preference for Heisman winners. That said, the Lions haven’t selected a Heisman winner in the draft since Andre Ware in 1990.
Many of Detroit’s Heisman picks didn’t work out well. Many of the selections were made in the early days of professional football, where a career as a professional athlete was neither glamorous nor lucrative.
Heisman winners Larry Kelley and Clint Frank were selected by the Lions in back-to-back years, 1937 and 1938. Both Kelley and Frank opted to pursue careers away from football.
Heisman Winners in the NFL
|NFL Franchise||Heisman Draftees||Most Recent Selection|
|Lions||10||Andre Ware (1990)|
|Rams||9||Sam Bradford (2010)|
|Oilers/Texans||6||Derrick Henry (2016)|
|Commanders||5||Robert Griffin III (2012)|
|Bears||4||Rashaan Salaam (1995)|
|Eagles||4||Devonta Smith (2021)|
|Raiders||4||Charles Woodson (1998)|
|Saints||4||Reggie Bush (2006)|
|Bengals||3||Joe Burrow (2020)|
|Browns||3||Baker Mayfield (2017)|
|Buccaneers||3||Jameis Winston (2015)|
|Cowboys||3||Herschel Walker (1985)|
|Packers||3||Ty Detmer (1992)|
|Cardinals||2||Kyler Murray (2019)|
|Colts||2||Alan Ameche (1955)|
|Panthers||2||Cam Newton (2011)|
|Patriots||2||Jim Plunkett (1971)|
|Steelers||2||Johnny Lattner (1954)|
|49ers||1||Steve Spurrier (1967)|
|Broncos||1||Tim Tebow (2010)|
|Chargers||1||Johnny Rodgers (1973)|
|Falcons||1||Pat Sullivan (1972)|
|Ravens||1||Troy Smith (2007)|
|Vikings||1||Gino Torretta (1993)|
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