Detroit Lions offensive philosophy
We have watched the offense have very good production in the passing game with Matthew Stafford under center but balance on that side of the ball has been hard to come by.
Despite former running back Reggie Bush‘s assertion that the Lions are cheap, Detroit has tried to find a running game to assist Stafford but with poor results. 2018 marked some good improvement after drafting running back Kerryon Johnson and adding two free agent linemen, along with spending several high draft picks.
The run game averaged 103.8 yards per game and over four yards per carry, which moved them out of the bottom of run statistics for the first time since before former coach Jim Caldwell had taken over.
The twenty-third rank, although encouraging, wasn’t enough for general manager Bob Quinn or head coach Matt Patricia. This offseason they interviewed and hired offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell to bring his run-heavy scheme to the Motor City.
The shift to running the ball more should dovetail with the better defense being played but it should also allow quarterback Matthew Stafford to throw the ball less and take better care of the football. Not only have the Lions invested in both lines, offense and defense, but the Lions depth is also better at almost every position, save a few where there’s room to grow.
Bevell has had a lot of success at supporting Russell Wilson in Seattle, and previous to that working with Brett Favre in both Green Bay and Minnesota. Those past successes give us hope that modifying the Detroit Lions offense will pay dividends for Stafford in maximizing his downfield opportunities by forcing teams to pay more attention to the run game.