New faces: DE Trey Flowers, DT Mike Daniels, WR Danny Amendola, TEs T.J. Hockenson and Jesse James, RB C.J. Anderson, Justin Coleman and Rashaan Melvin, S Andrew Adams, OL Oday Aboushi.

HOUSTON, TX – AUGUST 17: T.J. Hockenson #88 of the Detroit Lions is tackled by Xavier Woodson-Luster #56 of the Houston Texans and Chris Johnson #43 in the first half during the preseason game at NRG Stadium on August 17, 2019 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images)

Key losses: S Glover Quin, DE Ezekiel Ansah, DT Ricky Jean Francois, OG T.J. Lang, CB Nevin Lawson, RB LeGarrette Blount, QB Matt Cassel, TEs Michael Roberts, Levine Toilolo and Luke Willson, WRs Jermaine Kearse, TJ Jones and Bruce Ellington, LB Trevor Bates.

GLENDALE, ARIZONA – DECEMBER 09: Ezekiel Ansah #94 of the Detroit Lions reacts on the bench during the NFL game against the Arizona Cardinals at State Farm Stadium on December 09, 2018 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Jennifer Stewart/Getty Images)

Strengths: Passing game and defensive line. QB Matthew Stafford has a trio of talented WRs: Kenny Golladay, Marvin Jones, and Amendola. Veteran TE (James) and a first-round pick (Hockenson) give him even more targets. Flowers was the best player added in offseason, filling the void created when the team let Ansah leave in free agency. Daniels, former Pro Bowl player in Green Bay, was signed in late July after being cut in salary cap move. Newcomers join returning DTs Damon “Snack” Harrison and A’Shawn Robinson along with DE Romeo Okwara

HOUSTON, TX – AUGUST 17: Matthew Stafford #9 of the Detroit Lions throws a pass before the preseason game against the Houston Texans at NRG Stadium on August 17, 2019 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images)

Weaknesses: Backup QB and LB pass-coverage woes. Detroit desperately needs to keep Stafford on the field. Tom Savage was signed to be No. 2 QB and has spent time in concussion protocol. Other options are Josh Johnson, three-game starter for Washington last season, and David Fales, who has never started NFL game. LBs Jarrad Davis, Devon Kennard and Christian Jones are strong against the run but struggle against the pass.

DETROIT, MI – AUGUST 8: Tom Savage #3 of the Detroit Lions runs for a first down during the first quarter of the preseason game against the New England Patriots on August 8, 2019 in Detroit, Michigan. New England defeated Detroit 31-3. (Photo by Leon Halip/Getty Images)

Fantasy Players To Watch: Golladay. He may approach double digits in catches and touchdowns after having 70 receptions for 1,063 yards and five scores last year in second NFL season.

Vegas Says: Win Super Bowl 100-1. Over/under wins 6 ½.

DETROIT, MI – AUGUST 8: Detroit Lions Offensive Coordinator Darrell Bevell calls plays during the second quarter of the preseason game against the New England Patriots at Ford Field on August 8, 2019 in Detroit, Michigan. (Photo by Leon Halip/Getty Images)

Expectations: Matt Patricia should be able to at least approach .500 after losing 10 games in the first season as head coach at any level. New offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell can strike balance with RB Kerryon Johnson and Anderson taking some pressure off Stafford. If defensive line plays to potential, franchise with one postseason victory since winning 1957 NFL title might be playing meaningful games in December.

© 2019 Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.


Leave a Reply