Detroit Lions: Offensive X-Factors for each position group

Kenny Golladay, Detroit Lions (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
Kenny Golladay, Detroit Lions (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images) /
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Detroit Lions offense
Detroit Lions offense (Photo by Dustin Bradford/Getty Images) /

Breaking down the Detroit Lions offense, based on the players who can be the biggest difference makers at their positions in 2020.

X-Factor (noun): A variable in a given situation that could have the most significant impact on the outcome. In sports terms, it’s a little bit harder to describe, but we know when we see it. It’s when a player adds something extra to their game, which serves to elevate everyone else around them as a result. This post is all about trying to sort out which Detroit Lions players best fit that hybrid definition.

Dividing the current roster up by the general position groups, I’ve picked out the players whose performance will most likely determine how we feel about that unit as a whole by season’s end. This week I’m focusing on the offense.

As far as positional units go, the offense carries with it quite a range of completeness. The receivers seem to be all set, and the running backs look good as well, but with an asterisk until they can consistently show it on the field. The quarterbacks are just as top heavy as last year, and a fresh but questionable offensive line is tasked with keeping that top quarterback upright to make the rest of the offense go.

Who are the X-Factors on the Detroit Lions’ offense?

Picking which guys are going to be the difference makers and potentially define how their positional group is perceived isn’t anywhere close to an exact science. In some cases, it’s as simple as the best/most talented player having another great season. In others, it’s versatility and depth that are just as important as star power.

It would have been too easy for me to just take the top player at each position and call them ‘X-Factors’–not really within the spirit of I’m trying to get at. The end result is a solid mix of rookies, vets, newcomers, guys coming in with high expectations, and guys with no expectations at all. Here’s a look at the Lions 2020 offense through the lens of these X-Factors.