Dec 22, 2012; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Lions defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh (90) celebrates after sacking Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan (not pictured) during the second quarter at Ford Field. Mandatory Credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports

Detroit Lions: DJC Readers choose defensive line as strongest unit


In June, we viewed the Lions entire roster, breaking down last years numbers and compiling them for this years 53-man roster. Placing priority on the positions Jim Schwartz has over the past four seasons.

Last season, Matthew Stafford was coming off his first full season as a pro. They kept Kellen Moore as their third string quarterback, and in doing so — without Moore taking a single snap — it took a roster spot away from a more depth needy position.

Entering this season, Stafford is coming off back-to-back healthy seasons, and the Lions may finally utilize the extra roster spot on a position of need. With Shaun Hill remaining one of the top backups in the game, it may be an easy decision.

However, the fans choose a defensive line unit in flux as their strongest unit. Gone are the top three defensive ends (Kyle Vanden Bosch, Cliff Avril, Lawrence Jackson) who will be replaced by rookie Ezekiel Ansah and veterans Jason Jones and Israel Idonije.

But the biggest strength comes from within, as Ndamukong Suh and Nick Fairley our one of the top defensive tackle tandems in the league. Last season that tandem combined for 13.5 sacks and 2 forced fumbles.

For the poll, 106 readers participated. Forty-two percent choose the defensive line, while twenty-four percent argued the quarterback position was the Lions most talented group. Rounding out the top five where the running backs, wide receivers, and defensive backs.

Dick's Sporting Goods presents "Hell Week":

Tags: Defensive Line Detroit Lions DJC Readers

  • maturallite

    I hope they get rid of Kellen so he can get on a real team and stick it to the Lions. Go K Moore!

  • seevee

    The coaches know what they have in Kellen. I expect him to shine this pre-season.

    • Bradley La Brie

      When you have that kind of money in your second string QB — including what you believe is the face of the franchise — why keep a third string Quarterback who looked lost in training camp and the preseason last year?

      • seevee

        Because Kellen Moore is an exceptional talent. Not only does he see the field well, he processes what he sees extremely quickly, and has great touch and superior accuracy. He knows the playbook inside and out, upside down and backwards. He knows what the defense is going to do before they do. His arm is plenty strong enough. I would put it in the same class as Unitas or Montana as far as strength. I know I sound like a Chuck Norris joke when I talk about Moore, but I watched every play he made while at BSU, and I’m telling you the guy is legit. This pre-season should show what he can do when given a chance to get on the field. Last year the receivers dropped a ton of his passes stopping drive after drive. I watched them all.

        • Ron Dulaney

          Well said, seevee, but trying to tell Detroit fans what a jewel they have in KM when they never saw or don’t remember Unitas or Montana, is like “casting pearls before swine”(from the Bible). But I bet they’ll check him out (Google him!) after he becomes backup qb prior to the regular season! Thanx,seevee.

        • Bradley La Brie

          My indictment on the Lions not carrying a third quarterback in no way reflected on Moore’s talent — which is skeptical at best. Rather, it allows the Lions the opportunity to strengthen their depth throwout the roster. FYI, classifying Unitas and Montana’s arm strength with Moore is incredibly ridiculous.

      • Ron Dulaney

        Lost? I’m afraid the only thing “lost in training camp and the preseason last year” were your powers of observation. Kellen Moore had a fine training camp. Just ask the coaching staff. And, for a rookie preseason, he did way better than most, with 2 TDs and 2 INTs. Colin Kaepernick’s rookie 49er preseason was NO TDs and 5 INTs!

  • Chris Wyman


  • Ron Dulaney

    “…it took a roster spot away from a more qualified position.” What does that mean, “… a more qualified position”? More “qualified position” than quarterback?
    Four points:
    One. – When Kellen Moore was picked as the third qb on the 53-man roster, the team was only a year away from TWO years of qb injuries. For that reason alone it was a smart call.
    Two. – As “seevee” noted, the coaching staff obviously recognized Moore’s talent and wanted it protected from other teams’ claims by keeping him on the 53 man roster.
    Three – so you suggest that by protecting Kellen, the coaches “…took a roster spot away from a more qualified (3rd, 4th or 5th stringer!) position” who could have… what? Won us 2 or 3 more games? Wow! Yeah! See What You Did, Kellen?! You and your talent screwed up the whole season!!
    Four. – Did this article (?) even NEED to be written? If only 106 people responded to this survey, what’s the point? Obviously the Lions fan base was busy elsewhere. Personally, I think this writer “took a spot away from a more qualified position.”

    • Bradley La Brie

      Adding an additional WR, DE or OL would be more valuable than a third string QB this season. When you invest as much as the Lions have into their quarterback position, it’s time to put your trust into that unit. Thanks for the read.

      • Ron Dulaney

        That would depend upon the quality of the WE, DE, OL or the QB, and if you want to protect them from being claimed off the practice squad. Also, how does giving your starting QB the support, security and confidence of a fine backup somehow undermine “…your trust in that unit”? More of your fuzzy logic?

  • Ron Dulaney

    Mr. LABRIE,
    Thanks for changing “… a more qualified position” to “… a more depth needy position.”
    It helped to clarify … a little.