Embed from Getty Images While the 2019-20 NFL season is just three games old, and it is true that last season, the Detroit Lions’ pass defense was among the worst in the NFL. They finished 30th in passer rating allowed and tied for 27th in yards per attempt allowed. Through three games no team is covering receivers better than the Detroit Lions.
The Detroit Lions are also doing a very solid job getting their hands on opponent’s passes. They currently rank third in the NFL in passes defended (24), just two behind the league-leading Patriots. By comparison, the so-called elite defenses of the Packers and the Bears have 18 and 16 passes defended.
During the offseason Lions general manager Bob Quinn set out to fix the Detroit secondary. Quinn added two new starters at the cornerback position in Rashaan Melvin and Justin Coleman, and also drafted safety Will Harris in the third round of the 2019 NFL Draft.
The moves made during the offseason appear to be a huge upgrade. What was the Lions biggest area of concern entering the season has turned out to be a false concern.
Quandre Diggs and Tracy Walker have a chance to be a dynamic one-two punch at the safety positions. The aforementioned third round draft pick Will Harris out of Boston College is a versatile, hard-hitting player that has earned playing time.
Detroit Lions head coach Matt Patricia’s defenses like to run three safety sets and they have the talent to not only run it but overcome injury as well. This season the Lions the secondary is decidedly deeper and has options. Allowing Patricia’s vision of a run stuffing, pass stopping defense to dictate what offenses can and can not do.
Last season the Detroit defense was not very good at forcing turnovers. With better play at the line of scrimmage and more consistent pressure from the defensive line and linebackers, the secondary will have every chance to get their hands on the ball. Which is what has happened three games in.