The Detroit Lions, after making eight selections in the 2023 NFL Draft, acted fast to sign Minnesota running back Mohamed Ibrahim as an undrafted free agent. Ibrahim, standing at 5’8″ and weighing 203 pounds, was signed with a significant $100,000 guaranteed bonus, reflecting the team’s confidence in his potential to join the 53-man roster.
Record-Breaking College Career
As a four-year starter, Ibrahim achieved the most rushing yards in a single game (263), single season (1,665), and career (4,668), while also setting rushing touchdown records (53). With a physical, no-nonsense presence, Ibrahim’s vision, power, and decisiveness will be an asset in the NFL. A healthy Ibrahim could play a valuable short-yardage role for the Lions.
Power Running Back for Lions?
Ibrahim, a prototypical power running back, boasts a sturdy frame, allowing him to effectively create yards after contact. Ibrahim’s strengths lie in his fearless running, great balance, lower-body strength, and pass protection.
When asked about what makes him so difficult to bring down at first-contact, Ibrahim responded:
Feet don’t die. That’s one thing that coach [Kenni] Burns always says: Don’t let your feet die so they hit you at one yard. Just keep driving your feet and you’re gonna fall forward for four. Then you look up at the end of the game, and you got 50 yards after contact and it’s only because your feet don’t stop.
However, he faces limitations in his hip stiffness, below-average explosiveness, long speed, and limited experience catching passes at Minnesota. His limited presence as a receiver and durability concerns may have contributed to him going undrafted.
Bouncing Back from Injury
Concerns about Ibrahim’s ability to recover from his torn Achilles were laid to rest with his impressive 2023 season, accumulating 1,665 rushing yards, 20 touchdowns, and 320 carries. These numbers led the Big Ten in rushing yards and touchdowns, with carries ranking second.
Ibrahim’s Potential in the Lions Lineup
A healthy Ibrahim could prove valuable in a Lions running back room, featuring David Montgomery, Jahmyr Gibbs, Craig Reynolds, Jermar Jefferson, Jason Cabinda, Greg Bell, and Ibrahim himself.
Overall, Mohamed Ibrahim is a powerful, short back with impressive strength, balance, and acceleration. His pass-protection skills will likely win over the pro coaching staff, making him a promising addition to the Detroit Lions.
For more from our Detroit Lions beat writer, Matt Broder, check him out on Twitter here: @mattbro21
Tweet: @WoodwoodSports or comment on your favorite social media platform!
Photo Credit: © Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports