Allen Park — Graham Glasgow's goal is simple: He wants to be the best center in the NFL. It's a lofty standard, but one that doesn't feel out of reach. Not bad for a kid who walked on at the University of Michigan eight years ago.
Selected in the third round of the 2016 draft, Glasgow has continued his upward trajectory through the early stages of his professional career. He moved into the starting lineup as a rookie, capably handled the starting left guard job while playing every offensive snap in his second season and made a seamless transition to center last year.
"It hasn’t come without a lot of hard work," Glasgow said. "And truly, if I want to get to where I want to be, it’s still going to take a lot more hard work. Just coming in here every day and making sure I improve is something I’m really looking forward to and I’m going to be a better player."
Glasgow's focus entering his fourth season is to continue that improvement as he tries to set the bar at the center position.
"It's everybody's goal to be the best at their positions — be the best at whatever they do," Glasgow said. "So, I'd like to be the best center I can be."
When evaluating his individual performance from a season ago, one aspect of his game he was disappointed with was his hand usage. That led to an uptick in penalties, including a team-high five holding infractions. He'll be looking to clean that up this year.
He'll face that challenge with a new guard off his right shoulder. The Lions parted ways with Pro Bowl veteran T.J. Lang this offseason and there will be a number of options competing for that job.
Given his year-to-year improvements, there's little reason to believe Glasgow isn't up to the challenge. And if he holds up his end of the bargain, he's primed for a big contract extension. His rookie deal is set to expire after this season.
During his tenure as Lions general manager, Bob Quinn has often sought to lock up key contributors such as Glasgow the summer before they're able to hit the market. Glasgow deflected away questions about his desire to get a deal done early to stay in Detroit.
"I'm just going to leave that up to my agent and the organization," he said. "I'm not too worried about it. There's a lot of football to be played and a lot of time to pass before I really even kind of get into that."