DETROIT (WWJ) – Among the big names taking in this year’s auto show: legendary Detroit Lions Running Back Barry Sanders.

The Lions playoff appearance last weekend is still fresh in Sanders’ mind. Speaking to WWJ’s Sandra McNeill during a Nissan event at Cheli’s Chili Bar, Sanders says he never regretted his retirement, but he’s still emotionally involved with the team. He says the Lions met his expectations this year, especially the quarterback.

“This is the guy we were hoping we drafted,” Sanders said. “The way he delivered this year … played through a lot, you know, showed that he could put the ball in a lot of tight spots, get the ball down field, toughness.”

Sanders also said the Lions have a great core.

“You look at … Javid Best and Calvin Johnson, Matthew Stafford — I mean if you can keep a nucleus like that — then they’re gonna be o.k.

But, Sanders added, they have to find a way to beat Green Bay.

What’s It Like For The Son Who Carries His Name?

2005 Photo: Chris Ivey, Getty Images

Sanders son, Barry Sanders Jr., will play for Stanford in the fall. But, is it hard for his son to live in his father’s shadow?

“Made his momma proud,” Sanders said. “It was pretty much his decision. He worked hard to be able to get into there. I’m excited about what he’s gonna be able to accomplish there. He’s had very unique experiences, privileges. Being my son, there are some obstacles, you know, but … I consider him fortunate. He has two parents that love him, that supported him.”