The Detroit Lions face a critical season in 2012. This season either continues the trajectory of their ascent from 0-16 to the NFL’s elite or it becomes a stumbling block like Lions fans saw so many times during the 1990s.
There are five players that have something to prove in 2012 that will set the course to determine which way the Lions’ season will go.
5. Jahvid Best – When Best as been on the field he has been electric for the Lions. Best’s ability to turn a 5 yard pass into a 50 yard touchdown is uncanny, and his blazing speed has added a dynamic to the Lions’ offense that few NFL teams have. With Mikel Leshoure, bruising up the middle and a talented receiving group, Best could have one of the biggest impacts on the team in 2012. The problem with Best is that he just hasn’t been able to stay healthy. Since entering the league Best has suffered from turf toe and multiple concussions. If Best can remain healthy this season, there won’t be many teams that can contain the Lions offense.
4. Ndamukong Suh – Suh’s rookie season was incredible. He posted 66 tackles, 10 sacks, an interception, and a fumble recovery for a touchdown. While Suh was still effective in his second season (36 tackles, four sacks), he didn’t quite live up to the expectations most of us had for him. Teams figured out how to use Suh’s strength against him, which resulted in long run plays for opposing offenses and less tackles and sacks for Suh. Suh has the potential to be a future hall of famer, but he must do what all great players do- adjust and develop his weaknesses.