The Detroit Lions have plenty of depth in the secondary, so there's a battle for back end depth roles and not starting jobs for the first time in awhile. Undrafted rookie corner Steven Gilmore is among the competitors, and he has had some good showings in practice.
Gilmore drew the start against the Jacksonville Jaguars on Saturday. The first series of the game was an exercise in being an NFL cornerback and the short memory it requires. Gilmore was beaten on a deep pass, albeit when he had pretty good coverage, but then responded with a nice pass breakup in the end zone to force a field goal.
Later in the first quarter, Gilmore was in the right place, snagging a deflection from Tracy Walker and making a nice interception.
Gilmore's run in the first half was solid. He didn't look overmatched, and he recovered nicely after allowing a big play,
Competing against the likes of Starling Thomas, Chase Lucas and Khalil Dorsey for a roster spot or a practice squad invitation, big plays in game action could end up being the difference. With starters and second string sitting, Gilmore's best statement was made at the perfect time.
Steven Gilmore gets shout out from All-Pro brother
One of Gilmore's other advantages is his bloodlines. His brother Stephon Gilmore has been one of the best cornerbacks in the NFL over the last several years, and Gilmore has said he talks to his older brother often as he tries to get his footing in the NFL--daily even.
As the younger Gilmore was making plays for the Lions on Saturday, his brother was watching and took to Twitter to show it.
Gilmore has plenty to offer the Lions' defensive backfield. His play in Week 2 of the preseason is likely to be a major feather in his cap as he tries to get noticed and earn a roster spot.