Know Your Enemy: Scouting the Detroit Lions

With a very important road game quickly approaching for the Seahawks, I figure it was time to start taking a look at the Lions and seeing if me could identify some strengths and weakness for the team. That way we could see who to concentrate on.

After looking over the team’s stats, and taking a look at the film available, I think there’s some pretty clear areas on both sides.

Strengths

Matthew Stafford and Calvin Johnson are most certainly counted among their team’s greatest strength. The combo make up one of the league’s top passing attacks, even though the other skill players contribute very little to the offense.

The Offensive Line is a major strength as well. This unit is lead by former Seahawk Rob Simms and center Dominic Raiola, though the entire unit is solid.

On defense, the strength lies up front on the defensive line. Ndamukong Suh and Nick Fairley lead the way for an agressive and disruptive defensive line. I should also add that safety Chris Huston has played outstanding this season as well.

Weaknesses

With Nate Burleson now in injured reserve the year, the Lions definitely lack offensive weapons other than Johnson. Titus Young has been unimpressive this season, as has TE Brandon Pettigrew.

Complicating the problems for the offense, is that their running game is also a weakness. Mikel Leshoure has been better in recent games, but overall hasn’t shown he can be a difference maker. He’s lucky that his offensive line has helped make him look better than he really is.

Defensively, the Lions are lacking talent and productivity at linebacker. Justin Durant has been the best of the group, and he’s barely been average. DeAndre Levy has been a downright liability. Overall, even with the quality players lists above in the strengths category, the defense generally a weakness, though it’s not as bad as it was a year ago.

The Lion’s special teams units have to also be considered a weakness. I love Jason Hanson, but he’s not getting any younger. Overall their special teams units grade out as the worst in the NFL according to my special teams index for my power rankings.

Topics: Calvin Johnson, Detroit Lions, Seattle Seahawks

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