Detroit drafted the Auburn standout Thursday night to strengthen perhaps the best part of an improved team.
The Lions took defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh with the second pick of the 2010 draft and he was the only rookie on The Associated Press All-Pro team. They also have standouts Kyle Vanden Bosch and Corey Williams on the defensive line.
The 6-foot-4, 298-pound Fairley entered the draft after winning the Lombardi Award as a junior with the Tigers.
The native of Mobile, Ala., was once projected as a possible No. 1 overall pick. His stock seeped to slip because of questions about his work ethic.