Our Detroit Lions have gone through a lot of change over the past year and despite their expected win total to be at a low number, we have more storylines to follow than ever. I was asked earlier what player or situation I’ll keep my eye on as the season progresses.
I thought about it for a long while. There are obvious choices such as Detroit’s new defensive scheme, quarterback Jared Goff’s return to a system he ran in college, and the brand new culture head coach Dan Campbell will attempt to establish.
However, none of those interest me enough to be my favorite … My Answer: The players left behind by Detroit’s last regime.
When former general manager Bob Quinn was hired, he cleaned house. By the end of his tenure, the majority of the players left on the roster were either signed, drafted, or traded by him. That was a mistake.
One of my strongest beliefs when it comes to the early stages of team building in the NFL is to use what you inherit. Three years down the line I don’t want to see all of Quinn’s players gone from the team.
Newly acquired general manager Brad Holmes looks as if he’s avoiding making that same mistake Quinn did. The Lions’ offense already appears to be built around Quinn’s draft picks D’Andre Swift and T.J. Hockenson. Center Frank Ragnow has received an extension too.
Although, those players are already established building blocks on the team. I’m speaking towards Quinn’s younger players who’ve yet to develop or receive a meaningful role.
Players such as receiver Quintez Cephus, lineman Logan Stenberg, edge rusher Julian Okwara, defensive end Austin Bryant, and linebacker Jahlani Tavai. I’d hate for these players to be ignored because they weren’t brought in by the current regime.
That’s not to say all of these players are diamonds in the rough, but it would be nice if all were evaluated properly. So, this season, the storyline that will have my utmost attention will be how these handful of players adjust to the new regime. What’s your answer? Make sure to tell us in the comment section below.