Detroit Lions: Position by position breakdown of the 53-man roster

Detroit Lions (Photo by Leon Halip/Getty Images)
Detroit Lions (Photo by Leon Halip/Getty Images) /
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Kerryon Johnson/Detroit Lions (Photo by Leon Halip/Getty Images)
Kerryon Johnson/Detroit Lions (Photo by Leon Halip/Getty Images) /

Running Backs

  • Kerryon Johnson #33
  • D’Andre Swift #32
  • Adrian Peterson #28
  • Ty Johnson #31

The Lions rushing attack has lacked explosiveness in recent years and the team is hoping that two newcomers to the running back committee will change that.

Kerryon Johnson showed glimpses of what he could be in 2018 rushing for a total of 641 yards over 118 attempts in 10 games for an average of 5.4 yards a run which included two games where he rushed for 100+ yards. 2019 was a different story though as he rushed for 403 yards averaging 3.6 yards a run. The biggest thing for Johnson though will be staying on the field as he’s missed a total of 14 games in his career.

With the struggles of Johnson in 2019, the Lions selected D’Andre Swift in the second round. The Lions are hoping that Swift will bring stability and force to a Lions shaky running game. Heading into the draft, he was being compared to star running backs Alvin Kamara of the New Orleans Saints and Dalvin Cook of the Minnesota Vikings. The Lions are hoping he can turn into that type of player as they could really use a running back of that caliber.

The Lions nabbed Adrian Peterson after he was released by Washington by giving him $1.05 million. Despite being 35 years old, he rushed for 898 yards last season averaging 4.3 yards a run and rushing to the endzone five times. While the Lions brought him in to provide a winning culture in Detroit, he was also brought in to mentor the Lions young running back duo of Kerryon Johnson and Swift.

The Lions sixth-round pick of the 2019 draft in Ty Johnson had 63 attempts last season while appearing in every single game. He rushed for 273 yards and will serve as depth in case multiple running backs go down with injuries.

The Lions have a nice combination of young running backs with a veteran who is a former MVP to mentor them. They just need to provide more value when they’re relied upon on the field.