Embed from Getty Images Detroit Lions head coach, Matt Patricia has repeatedly stated that he is constantly evaluating players and hoping to grow the team in the preseason. The scaled back play that was consistently seen on both sides of the ball in practices and training camp were absent in the games.
One of Matt Patricia’s hallmarks as a coach is to devise an opponent specific gameplan, especially for his defense. There was no evidence of any sort of that throughout the preseason. That is just fine. There is no need to show anything on offense, defense and special teams in meaningless games.
Patricia also played veterans sparingly if at all. Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford did not play until the third preseason game. Fans and media freaked out. For no reason at all. Wondering on social media if he was hurt, or simply was not picking up the playbook from new Lions offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell.
All of that was false. The Lions already knew Stafford was the starting quarterback. What they did not know was who was going to back him up. The fact the Lions head coach did not play many veterans was certainly his prerogative.
If the Detroit Lions look sharp and well prepared in the teams first couple of weeks of the regular season, nobody will remember or care about the apathetically vanilla preseason. If the team looks lost and unprepared fans will call for Patricia’s head and the media will say the coach has failed.
The fact of the matter is the preseason is only for newly drafted players, veterans on a try-out and non-roster invitees. There is never a reason any NFL team should play a veteran during meaningless, scalded-back games.
Detroit Lions general manager Bob Quinn, was asked about his head coach and had this to say, “I think he definitely changed the ways he’s done some things,” Quinn said. “I think he’s taken a lot of input from the players. A lot of great conversations, I would say, dating back to January, February, March when the players weren’t in the building about things that he was thinking about and wanted to get some input from some of the veteran guys. Very reflective. Very honest with himself.”
The Lions kickoff the 2019 season September 8 against the Arizona Cardinals. That will be a much better look at the football team and where it stands.
Embed from Getty Images It is only preseason…. it is only preseason…… it is only preseason. Like many Detroit Lions fans this is what I keep reminding myself. However preseason aside. The Lions have serious problems.
The Detroit Lions have struggled, on both the offensive line and defensive line. The offensive line which was Lions general manager Bob Quinn’s biggest targets in both the NFL draft and free agency has not been in sink. Quarterback Matthew Stafford has been sacked 3 times in two preseason games.
Both Kenny Wiggins and Graham Glasgow have gotten off to bad starts. The offensive line has good talent. They must clean up on blocking and individual mistakes. Which certainly could happen.
The defensive line is a whole mess. A’ Shawn Robinson, has been well horrible. The second round 2016 draftee has put in back- to- back bad performances. Against the Oakland Raiders and New York Giants. He missed would be tackles and was shoved out of the way by offensive linemen. At 6′ 4″, 322 lbs he should not simply get pushed around.
Through two preseason games the Detroit Lions have been sloppy. Blown blocks, way too many penalties and not holding onto the ball. This is the part of the preseason where teams are starting to gel and gain momentum to head into the regular season with. Time is ticking. Lions head coach Matt Patrica knows it.
The good in all of the bad play was that Detroit Lions players were mad. After the game. Veterans called out under performing players. As it should be. Players were very quick to praise the work that coach Patrica and his staff has done in preparing the players, The players understand it is all on them.
Still it needs to come together. Soon. Coaches do not coach sloppiness. Matt Patricia is a stickler for detail. He was not in a talking mood after Friday’s loss at the hands of the Giants. He only said “things need to get cleaned up.”
It is only preseason…. it is only preseason…. it is only preseason. But soon it will not be.
Embed from Getty Images As the Detroit Lions begin the process of getting game ready for the 2018-19 NFL regular season. Tonight’s game against the Oakland Raiders offers a few things for Lions fans to watch for.
Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford is expected to play 3 downs tonight. Barely enough time to get his feet wet. More like a toe. Still Lions fans need to keep and eye on the revamped offensive line.
Running back, Kerryon Johnson looks to take the bulk of snaps in the Detroit backfield. No surprise as the Detroit Leo’s try to kick start some sort of running game.
Cornerback Tez Tabor, has had a good first two weeks of training camp. Drafted last season the second year DB looks to gain more playing time. With Detroit all world corner Darius Slay not expect to play (due to giving first and second year players a look) Tabor has a wide open door to walk through. If he picks up where he left off at the end of his rookie season Tez Tabor will get the playing time he craves.
Wide receiver Brandon Powell who has gifted speed and the ability to make plays in space should get a few tosses his way. The speedy Powell could also return some punts.
Preseason NFL game seem boring to many fans. Not to me. This is where all the scouting and film watching either pay off or disappoint. I like watching the games because sometimes there are players who are diamond in the roughs.