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Posts of category  "Lions"

The Lions have mitigated their needs on the offensive line by signing Packers Pro Bowl guard T.J. Lang. (AP File Photo)

Offensive line

Current starters: LT Taylor Decker, LG Graham Glasgow, C Travis Swanson, RG T.J. Lang, RT Rick Wagner
Current reserves: Joe Dahl, Laken Tomlinson, Cornelius Lucas, Corey Robinson, Brandon Thomas, Matt Rotheram
Best in class: Wisconsin OT Ryan Ramczyk, Utah OT Garett Bolles, Alabama OT Cam Robinson, Western Kentucky G Forrest Lamp
First-round possibilities for Detroit (21st overall): None.
Mid-round fits: San Diego State G Nico Siragusa, Tennessee State G Jessamen Dunker, Vanderbilt OT Will Holden
Late-round finds: Miami G Danny Isidora, UCLA T Conor McDermott, BYU OT Andrew Eide, Texas A&M G Jermaine Eluemunor
Breakdown: This is considered a historically bad draft at the position. Even the top of the class has issues. Robinson was fine his final year at Alabama, but too inconsistent to be considered a top pick. Ramczyk has started just one season and is recovering from hip surgery. Bolles might be the surest thing of the bunch, but he’s already 25 years old. That’s older than Eric Ebron, who is entering a contract year.

Of course, it’s also been no secret for a long time that this class sucks, and Bob Quinn planned accordingly. He went out and spent big on Wagner, the best right tackle to hit the open market, and Lang, who didn’t allow a QB hit en route to the Pro Bowl last year. Just like that, Detroit’s offensive line is settled everywhere except left guard, and even there it has a healthy three-way competition between two draft picks from last year (Glasgow and Dahl) and a first-round pick from two years ago (Tomlinson).

Of course, it wouldn’t be surprising to see Quinn take an offensive linemen eventually. That’s just good business, and even Detroit has taken at least one OL every year since 2005. But it’s not a need either, in the short or long term. And in a draft that offers so little, that’s an enviable spot to be in.

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The Lions aren’t in the market for a quarterback, but if one like Tennessee’s Josh Dobbs falls in the later rounds, they could still scoop him up to complement Matthew Stafford and Jake Rudock. (AP File Photo)

This is the first of an seven-part series previewing the Detroit Lions’ positional needs and priorities heading into the NFL draft. The installments are ordered by need, starting with where help is needed the least and ending where it’s needed the most.

Quarterback

Current depth chart: Matthew Stafford, Jake Rudock
Best in class: North Carolina’s Mitchell Trubisky, Clemson’s Deshaun Watson, Notre Dame’s DeShone Kizer
First-round possibilities for Detroit (21st overall): None.
Mid-round fits: Pitt’s Nathan Peterman, Tennessee’s Josh Dobbs
Late-round finds: Virginia Tech’s Jerod Evans, Iowa’s C.J. Beathard
Breakdown: Matthew Stafford is back for a ninth season in the starting hole, and if last season is any indication, he’s just entering his prime. He’s also headed a contract year, but both sides want a new deal and there is a strong belief throughout Allen Park that one will get done this summer. Expect to see something come down in July.

Behind Stafford, Jake Rudock has developed nicely since Detroit took him in the sixth round of last year’s draft. So much so, the club felt confident bidding adieu to longtime backup Dan Orlovsky this offseason. Barring something strange, Rudock will be the No. 2 in 2017.

All of this is to say, the Lions have a stable quarterback situation. Their needs here are low, and they’re all the better for it considering just how weak this class is. There just aren’t that many guys who are any good.

Having said that, don’t rule out the possibility of the Lions taking a sixth- or seventh-round flier on a quarterback either. Bob Quinn hails from a Patriots organization that drafted QBs frequently, even with Tom Brady in tow, and he’s said himself that he believes it’s good business to take one every year or every other year. Just don’t expect it to be a very high priority.

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Detroit Lions general manager expressed great disappointment that Joe Mixon was a Combine snub, but that doesn’t mean they’re interested.

Bob Quinn has made a habit of being tight-lipped regarding just about everything since becoming the Detroit Lions‘ general manager last offseason. That’s why it came as such a surprise that he would be so blunt in stating his disappointment that Oklahoma running back Joe Mixon wasn’t invited to the NFL Combine.

Mixon has been a polarizing prospect after video was made public of at 2014 incident in which he brutally punched a woman in the face.

 Just how interested the Lions might be in actually drafting Mixon has been left to speculation, with Quinn not even willing to say whether or not Mixon will be on their final draft board at all. Peter King’s Monday Morning Quarterback for this week list four teams most interested in Mixon, with the Lions not among them.

I’m hearing the Oklahoma running back, who had the 2014 incident of punching a female student in the face, has garnered the most interest from Cincinnati, Minnesota, Green Bay and Jacksonville. I won’t be surprised to see the Bengals take Mixon with the 41st overall pick.

Of course, not being among the group of teams “most interested” doesn’t necessarily mean the Lions aren’t interested. It does suggest, however, that there is likely to be a team more willing to make a controversial selection before the Lions.

If King is right and Mixon goes 41st, or somewhere in that range, it may not really matter just how much the Lions were interested in Mixon anyway. Even if they really liked him, it’s exceedingly unlikely they would consider making him the face of their 2017 draft class by making him their first pick and King’s feelers suggest Mixon could come off the board in the time between the Lions’ first and second round picks.

That should come as good news to Lions fans wringing their hands over the prospect of the Lions drafting Mixon. And for those fans who would be OK with drafting Mixon, there shouldn’t be any disappointment on missing out. A deep class of running backs means there are plenty of other options to find a good prospect in the middle rounds.

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The first half of the schedule looks very difficult for the Detroit Lions.

The NFL Draft is coming fast, but on Thursday night, Detroit Lions fans and fans of every other team in the league (except the Cleveland Browns) were pumped up about the unveiling of the 2017 NFL regular season schedule. With that unveiling in the books, fans and “so-called” experts have already begun posting their rock solid lock predictions for the upcoming season.

Let’s face it, these “way too early” prediction pieces are nothing more than a way for news outlets and amazing blogs like us to keep readers entertained during a long offseason. Sure, we have no idea how the NFL Draft will play out (though I gave that a shot too), but somehow we seem to think we can predict an entire season with a high percentage of certainty.

Well, predicting the Detroit Lions 2017 regular season schedule is exactly what I am going to attempt. But, instead of trying to be the smartest guy in the room like many others will do across the internet, I am going to have a little bit of fun with it. If you are looking for an in-depth breakdown of each game, tough crap. In fact, anyone who claims to be doing that is lying to your face.

So, let’s get to it. Here is a look at my not-so-rock-solid game by game predictions for the Detroit Lions 2017 regular season. Disagree? Tell somebody who cares.

 First, an overview of the 2017 schedule.

The Detroit Lions don’t have much to worry about on the interior of the offensive line. Offensive guard and center were positions taken care of by general manager Bob Quinn during both his first draft and second free-agency period.

Starting center Travis Swanson is in a contract year and his potential replacement, Graham Glasgow, is the team’s starting left guard. But it’s not a significant need, so this is an area where late round picks and priority free agents could come into play.

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Jim Caldwell will spend at least a couple of days practicing in the same city he coached in for a decade.

The Detroit Lions announced the team will have joint practices with the Indianapolis Colts in the lead-up to the preseason opener for both teams on Aug. 13 at Lucas Oil Stadium. It’s the second straight year the Lions will have joint practices; they traveled to Latrobe, Pennsylvania, for two days of work with Pittsburgh last year.

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Mel Kiper Jr. decided to take a chance when making one of his selections for the Detroit Lions in his latest mock draft. In doing so, he took one of the most questionable players in the entire process.

As part of his “Grade A” mock draft – a draft where he plays general manager and picks players based on what he believes the teams need – Kiper took Oklahoma running back Joe Mixon for Detroit with the team’s second-round pick at No. 53.

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Here are the best reactions from around the web after the Lions released their four new uniforms.

The Detroit Lions uniform reveal went without a hitch on Thursday night. Though not everyone was thrilled with the changes, that were overall relatively minor. However, the general reaction was somewhat positive, and Detroit avoided a Los Angeles Chargers-like situation where they were mocked incessantly to the point that they ditched their new logo.

Nowhere are reactions more emotional and polarized than online. In the moments of the release, plenty of fans, players and analysts across the league shared their feelings on the new uniforms. Here’s a sampling of those reactions.

Pride Of Detroit

The folks on this fine site were mostly excited about the changes. As of late Thursday night, 33 percent of fans “loved” the uniforms, 33 percent liked them, while on 12 percent didn’t like them or hated them.

As for which of the outfits Pride Of Detroit liked best, surprisingly the Color Rush jerseys came in first place with 41 percent of the vote. The white jersey/blue pants combo of the away uniforms came in second with 33 percent of the vote. While the throwbacks and home uniforms trailed considerably, with 15 and 12 percent of the vote respectively.

The Players

No one seems to be more excited about these kind of events than the players. Here is a sampling of reaction from the Lions after the release, which mostly included flame emojis:

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The Detroit Lions head into the 2017 season with no shortage of key characters and key personalities to watch who will determine how far they manage to go.

Here’s a look at the key characters to watch next season.

(Photo: Raj Mehta, USA TODAY Sports)

(Photo: Raj Mehta, USA TODAY Sports)

(Photo: USA TODAY Sports)

(Photo: USA TODAY Sports)

(Photo: Tim Fuller, USA TODAY Sports)

(Photo: USA TODAY Sports)

(Photo: www.DetroitLions.com)

(Photo: USA TODAY Sports)

(Photo: Kirby Lee, USA TODAY Sports)

(Photo: Derick E. Hingle, USA TODAY Sports)

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The Lions are getting a new look.

At a ceremony in Detroit tonight, the Lions have unveiled new uniforms, with four jersey options: Blue for home games, white for away games, a silver “Color Rush” jersey and a throwback jersey similar to the jerseys the Lions wore in the 1930s.

The Lions will wear blue pants on the road and silver pants at home, with silver pants the same color as the silver jerseys on “Color Rush” games.

Lions President Rod Wood has been saying for months that the team would give itself a fresh new look, and had been working closely with Nike on the new designs.

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