Detroit Lions: Producing a top ten offense is realistic and on the horizon

(Photo by Dustin Bradford/Getty Images)
(Photo by Dustin Bradford/Getty Images) /
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Detroit Lions
(Photo by Rey Del Rio/Getty Images) /

First: Quarterback Matthew Stafford had been on pace to throw for 5,000 yards, potentially 40 touchdowns, and just ten interceptions last season at the time of his injury following his eighth start.  Stafford had been shut down for the remainder of the season with that lingering back injury.  The Lions were undoubtedly cautious with his health late in the year by keeping him on the sideline over the last couple of weeks.  Stafford himself said if the team were in the playoff hunt, he’d be playing.

We can’t predict injuries or count on injuries.  If Matthew Stafford remains healthy for the entire season, he’s already proven to excel in Darrell Bevell’s balanced, downfield striking offense.  Expect more of the same from Stafford entering the 2020 season.  Detroit also signed Chase Daniel to back up Stafford providing the team with a much more stable second-string signal-caller if the franchise quarterback is forced to miss any time at all.

Second: As previously mentioned, we can’t predict injuries, but after a pair of injury-plagued seasons for running back Kerryon Johnson, the Detroit Lions finally have a wonderful plan-B, or in my opinion, plan-A.

Rookie D’Andre Swift may not take the first carry of the year for the Detroit Lions, but I expect he will lead the team in all rushing categories by seasons’ end.  I feel the Lions drafted a franchise, ‘do it all’ rusher when they selected Swift with the 35th overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft.

The Detroit Lions struggled to muster any-type of rushing attack last season until Bo Scarbrough joined the team.  It was a distinct need for this organization entering the offseason leaving Bob Quinn to address the offensive line and backfield in either the draft or free agency.  Quinn tactfully released a speedily declining right tackle in Rick Wagner, replacing him with a mauling run-blocker, signing Halapoulivaati Vaitai.

Despite losing starting right guard Graham Glasgow to free agency, Quinn drafted both Jonah Jackson and Logan Stenberg along with Swift, all within the first four rounds of the draft.  Expect these changes to improve Detroit’s overall rushing attack, in turn, opening up even more passing lanes for Stafford this season.