Detroit Lions: Cornerback Teez Tabor not ready for bigger role
By Kellen Voss
Russell Wilson and the Seattle Seahawks handed another loss to the Detroit Lions because of a solid passing attack, with Teez Tabor being the main victim.
It was yet another classic Sunday for Detroit Lions fans: just when things finally looked positive and the playoffs seemed like more than just a pipe dream, they get blown out at home to a pretty average Seattle Seahawks team, 28-14.
Pointing fingers after a loss is never healthy, but there are a few units that need to be shored up for the Lions to succeed in the future. The offensive line was unable to open up holes in the running game, and the same team that gained more than 200 yards on the ground a week ago put up a measly 34 rushing yards.
Despite the Seattle Seahawks bolstering one of the worst offensive lines in football, quarterback Russell Wilson had way too long in the pocket to work, and the Detroit defensive line only managed to sack him two times in the contest.
But the overwhelming factor that led to the Lions loss had to be the putrid play of the secondary, as they allowed Russell Wilson to do whatever he wanted all day long, as he completed 82 percent of his passes for 248 yards and three touchdowns on only 17 throws, posting a perfect passer rating in the outing.
It cannot be forgotten that Wilson is obviously one of the best quarterbacks in football, but the way he was able to torch the Lions secondary was inexcusable, especially from a unit that ranked in the top ten in passing yards given up before this game.
While the unit as a whole should be to blame for this pitiful performance, one cornerback continuously got torched all day long, to the point where many Lions fans were wondering why Teez Tabor was on the field at all.
Although Tabor has been rated as an average to below average NFL corner by Pro Football Focus, he looked horrible in the Seahawks, giving up many big plays to a receiving corps that doesn’t feature a whole lot of talent.
Just look at his coverage on this touchdown by Seattle’s David Moore. Tabor not only manages to get beat in the first five steps of Moore’s route, but also jumps in front of Tabor as the ball is delivered, which were two weaknesses on Tabor’s draft profile that fans should have been concerned with.
The most deflating part of the touchdown given up by Tabor was the fact that Moore had enough space to bobble the ball and catch it on his second catch attempt. Despite being beat on the route, Tabor managed to be falling on the backside Moore once the ball arrived, which is obviously not an ideal spot for any corner to be in, let alone an NFL one.
That touchdown wasn’t the only lowlight for Tabor’s day, as he was on the field for most of Seattle’s long pass plays, playing lackadaisical coverage and lacking the physicality he was so heavily praised for in scouting report from April of 2017.
Tabor, a second round selection in 2017, has been rather unimpressive in his pro career, only amassing 14 tackles in 17 pro games. He also has yet to make a tackle for loss, force or recover a fumble, intercept a pass, or even record a single pass defend.
While this is a small sample size in a young career, the little spurts that Tabor has been on the field for the Lions has been dreadful. As Sean Lanigan detailed for the Detroit Lions Podcast, Tabor’s lack of top-end speed and poor positioning in zone coverage has been the reason why his limited snaps have been awful.
Obviously there is still hope for Teez Tabor in the future. He is still only 22-years old, and has time to develop in his young NFL career. But all the weaknesses detailed in his draft report have sadly been quite evident in his young career. And if he continues to play this poorly, Tabor could be unemployed by the time the 2018 season is over.
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