5 Detroit Lions players to watch in the preseason opener vs. Giants

During Friday night's preseason opener against the New York Giants, these five Detroit Lions players will have plenty of eyes on them.
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Nate Sudfeld, Detroit Lions
Kirthmon F. Dozier / USA TODAY NETWORK

3. DT Levi Onwuzurike

Onwuzurike is fully healthy for literally the first time in his three-year NFL career thus far during training camp. Keeping it that way will be of course important, but he also has to prove he can play. It's not an exaggeration to say he's somewhere around the roster bubble heading into the first preseason game.

Onwuzurilke should play plenty against the Giants on Friday night, since in a raw, simple way he needs reps. But even if it's against New York's second or eventually even third-string offensive line, it'd be nice to see him make some noticeable plays.

2. QB Nate Sudfeld

Teddy Bridgewater is obviously lined up to take the No. 2 quarterback spot from Sudfeld now.
The Lions are trying to maintain a mode of competition though, shown by not releasing Sudfeld in the corresponding move to the signing of Bridgewater becoming official. But "Teddy Two Gloves" is not going to play against the Giants on Friday night.

In a case of bad timing as much as anything, Sudfeld has not looked good in recent practices. It was easy to look well ahead and say he had to play well in the preseason opener, before the shadow of Bridgewater reappeared on the Lions' radar near the start of camp. Now it's absolutely vital he plays well against the Giants.

After Jared Goff maybe plays one or two series, Sudfeld should get the balance of the first half before giving way to Adrian Martinez. It's not a reach to say an especially bad showing could lead to him being cut on Monday.

1. WR Jameson Williams

Dan Campbell has not revealed a plan for many Lions players in the preseason opener. But he did say Williams will be "doused" with a ton of game reps in general this preseason, however obvious that is in light of the six-game suspension he'll serve to start the season.

Williams, for better or worse and fair or unfair, has been heavily scrutinized all offseason and into training camp. He can take a step toward putting a lot of that criticism to bed with a good performance against the Giants.

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