Photo: Kirthmon F. Dozier / USA Today
DETROIT, November 1, 2022 ~ The Detroit Lions announced at Sunday’s homecoming game halftime show that an 8-foot-tall bronze statue of Lions legend Barry Sanders will be erected outside Ford Field.
Sanders will be the first player in franchise history to be immortalized at the arena with a statue, which is set to be unveiled prior to the 2023 season.
“Detroit has been my home ever since I was drafted by the Lions in 1989. This statue means the city will be my home forever, it’s surreal.” said Sanders. “There is no way that I can express my gratitude to the entire Ford family, my teammates, my coaches, the Lions front office, the media, and most of all to the fans. As I soak it all in and reflect on my career, I recognize what a tremendous honor this is.”
(CONTINUED) The hall of famer was the third player in NFL history to rush over 2,000 yards in a season, and has amassed a trophy case that includes the 1997 NFL MVP award, the 1994 and 1997 NFL Offensive Player of the Year awards, the 1989 NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year award, and was First-Team All-Pro for six seasons.
This comes just a year following the reveal of a 9-foot-tall statue of Sanders at his alma mater Oklahoma State University.
“It is with immense pride that we share the news that we will be honoring the greatest running back in the history of football with a statue in the city we represent,” said Detroit Lions Principal Owner and Chair Sheila Ford Hamp. “He is truly in a class of his own, and while we may never see a player quite as electrifying or elusive again, Barry’s legacy will live forever and be tangible right here in Detroit.”