By: Dennis Fithian
A lot of Lions fans are hoping that Detroit’s first round draft pick this year Riley Reiff will be starting at right or even left tackle from the start of the season. Those fans could be disappointed when the Lions offensive line starts out against St. Louis with last years starters up front. Those fans shouldn’t be so sad.
Continuity and experience, especially from the offensive line, is important. The starters, from left to right tackle should be: Backus, Sims, Raiola, Peterman & Cherilus. Gosder Cherilus hasn’t lived up to his high draft status of being selected in the first round (17th overall) in the 2008 draft. Starting 55 games over a four year career gives Cherilus a good shot at starting out 2012 as the permanent right tackle this year. The presence of Rieff and the competition another first round tackle pick brings should/could bring the best out of Cherilus. Look at Reiff as insurance and an important piece in future Lions teams. The rest of the offensive starters on September 9th should be pretty clear cut.
Stafford, Best, Johnson, Burleson, Pettigrew & Scheffler. A two tight end starting set makes sense, at this time, considering second year wide out Titus Young’s recent suspension from OTA’s. All of the starters are back on the side of the ball that ranked top five in total offensive last year.