Bob Quinn ups expectations for the Detroit Lions running game in 2018
Bob Quinn selected four players to fix the run game. The Detroit Lions general manager was upset by last year’s poor results. What will 2018 look like?
The Draft is over; training camp won’t start until July. What we saw at the draft was mostly offense taken, specifically, players to improve the 32nd ranked run game. The safety and end picks we used on defense address some depth issues.
Whatever grade you would give general manager Bob Quinn and this draft, what impact do you expect on the field? Let’s discuss the ramifications of an offense-heavy draft on the run game.
By now, you’ve had a chance to look at the new Detroit Lions draftees and see all of the lovely data about how fast, strong, and physical they are. Quinn seems to be sending a message via who is coming in that he wants a bigger, more physical team.
Detroit took Frank Ragnow, center-guard, in round one. Kerryon Johnson, running back, got the call in round two. Round five brought tackle, Tyrell Crosby. Lastly, round seven got us fullback, Nick Bawden. Only two picks were used to bolster the defense: safety, Tracy Walker, and tackle, Da’Shawn Hand.
Quinn makes changes
I made the argument for starting off the draft with an offensive lineman, back a couple of weeks ago, so I cannot complain that Quinn went offense-heavy, or that he selected two offensive linemen. The roster needed more talent, and it needed help both in the interior at guard/ center, and at tackle where Detroit struggled to find a temporary fill-in for Taylor Decker last season. I’d have to say that on the line, it looks like we are deeper and better.
The Lions helped the backfield, taking both a talented runner and fullback. Kerryon Johnson has played running back in the SEC conference and is widely regarded as one of a handful of players who can compete for a starting job right away. Adding a fullback that is 6-2, 245 pounds tells you that we’re going to see some smash-mouth football. Can I get a BIG thumbs up?!?!
Also, if you’ve ever seen the New England Patriots play, you know that they are a matchup based team. They like versatility in their backfield. It is common to see four to five different runners in a single game, or for the main ball carrier to switch from game to game, or sometimes by half or quarter. Although offensive coordinator, Jim Bob Cooter, was not in New England, I would expect game plans to reflect the matchup mentality of head coach, Matt Patricia, who was a former Patriots coach.