With the first preseason game just around the corner, I thought I’d rank my top-five Detroit Lions going into this season, and this list is based on past performances and expectations going into this year.
#1 – Frank Ragnow
This is a pretty obvious choice because Ragnow has been a top three center for the last couple of years, but has had some serious trouble staying on the field due to injuries. Ragnow’s on-the-field play landed him a massive extension making him the second highest paid center in football just behind the Eagle’s Jason Kelce. In 2021 before suffering a neck injury, Ragnow posted an 86.7 PFF grade while allowing no sacks or penalties over that time./br>
#2 – Penei Sewell
Some people might call me crazy with this take but Penei Sewell is a generational talent and I expect him to take huge leaps this year and maybe even become top 10 at his position. Sewell’s season started off looking pretty rough but once Taylor Decker returned from injury, Sewell was able to slot back in at his RT which is his more comfortable position. In the final 8 weeks of the season, he posted an 81.4 PFF grade which ranked top five at the tackle position./br>
#3 – TJ Hockenson
Similar to Frank Ragnow, Hockenson is a tremendous player if he can stay healthy and that’s a big question mark surrounding him and his contract situation. When Hockenson is on the field he’s nothing short of game-changing, his size and athleticism give Goff a big red zone target and receiver that can go up and get it at any given time./br>
#4 – Amani Oruwariye
Safe to say that Oruwariye is one of the best players in the NFL at forcing turnovers, with that being said I do think that he needs to work on giving up fewer yards and he isn’t great as a tackler. He remains the heart and soul of this Lions secondary and I expect him to be the best player on the back end once again./br>
#5 – Taylor Decker
With the strong suit of this team being the offensive line, Decker rounds out the top five at the tackle position. Although injured for half of the season, Decker managed to come back and ended up having a solid season only allowing two sacks in his 529 snaps played leaving him with a 75.5 PFF grade./br>
After what should be an exciting season for Detroit fans I expect this list to drastically change with possible breakouts from rookies like Aidan Hutchinson and Jameson Williams, and possibly the emergence of running back D’andre Swift.