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Lions general manager Bob Quinn talks about the decision to take Arkansas offensive lineman Frank Ragnow with the team's first-round pick and what he brings to the table. Matt Charboneau, Detroit News

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Allen Park — The phone was predictably ringing, and the Detroit Lions were making several calls of their own. But when push came to shove, the team preferred to stay put at No. 20 and draft Arkansas center Frank Ragnow.

“We had multiple offers on the table for our pick,” general manager Bob Quinn said.

Quinn said the Lions had multiple players with similar grades, but Ragnow was the highest on the team’s board, making it an easy selection.

“Going through the evaluation process, there was a number of guys on the board that we liked. We just thought Frank was the best player at that time, the guy who could help us the most, the quickest,” Quinn said. “We’re really excited about the pick.”

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The Lions played their interest close to the vest. They interviewed Ragnow at the NFL Combine back in February, but that was the last communication they had with the offensive lineman.

And while he expected to be taken somewhere in the first round, Ragnow admitted he was caught off guard Detroit was the team that called.

“To be honest, I was pretty surprised,” he said. “They actually mentioned that on the phone that they really tried to keep it under the radar.”

Ragnow’s ability caught Quinn’s eye the first time he watched him on tape. Quinn declined to name a preferred position for the lineman, saying the team would spend the offseason determining if Ragnow is a better fit at guard or center.

jdrogers@detroitnews.com

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