2023 Detroit Lions

Freethinker

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Last year the Lions were the most improved team demographically and it paid off in the win column with a 9-8 record. Just barely missing the playoffs, the Lions should be motivated to get over the hump this year. Let's see how the roster and starters breakdown.

Total White Athletes on Roster (Starters in bold)
16 Whites total, with 7 starters. Grade: D

QB - Jared Goff
TE - Sam LaPorta, Brock Wright
T - Taylor Decker, Matt Nelson
G - Graham Glasgow, Colby Sorsdal
C - Frank Ragnow
DL - Aidan Hutchinson, John Cominsky
LB - Alex Anzalone, Jack Campbell, Malcolm Rodriguez

K - Riley Patterson
P - Jack Fox
LS - Scott Daly

IR - Nate Sudfeld (QB), Shane Zylstra (TE)
PS - David Blough (QB), Connor Glavin (OL), Michael Niese (OL), Max Pircher (T), Trevor Nowaske (LB), Michael Badgley (K)

A small drop-off of 2 in overall players and starters (for now). The offense is lead by former #1 overall pick Jared Goff in his 3rd season with the Lions. I think he was really on the hot season going into last year and he really stepped up in a big way. His 4,438 yards with 29 TDs and only 7 interceptions would in my opinion be his 2nd best season behind his terrific 2018 performance. At only 28 years old, I hope the Lions lock him up long term and build a Super Bowl contender around him. The next most compelling offensive player is rookie TE Sam LaPorta. Drafted early in the 2nd round, Sam has all of the skills to be the next great tight end from Iowa (TE U!). A perfect replacement for Hockenson. The offensive line is only 2/5th White and where the starter number drop came from. They need to protect Goff adequately well and the offense should excel again. Taylor Decker is the standout player on the line. For receivers, it was disappointing to see stalwart Tom Kennedy cut early with an injury and then Chase Cota cut late also with an injury. Neither appear on the roster but perhaps 1 or both could be brought back when they get over their injuries.

On defense, the team is one of the Whitest, considering the narrow parameters set up by the Caste NFL. Anzalone returns as an above average starter who had his best statistical season last year. Not sure why Derrick Barnes (who?) is starting over 2nd year talent Malcolm Rodriguez or prized rookie Jack Campbell. Campbell is an absolute beast, also from Iowa, who should be starting soon even with Caste obstacles thrown in his way. On the line, former #2 overall pick Aidan Hutchinson is off to a good start to his career with 52 tackles, 9.5 sacks and 3 interceptions! The local legend, who is from Michigan and starred at Michigan University is already a top pass rusher but expect him to improve further in year 2. He appears to be a big star and fan favorite in the city of Detroit. Rounding out the defense is rotational lineman John Cominsky. After being caste aside by the Falcons, who used him to warm the bench, it looks like he's finally getting meaningful snaps and has performed well so far as a Lion with a number of starts last year.

The Dan Campbell / Brad Holmes regime has so far been promising for both roster composition and also results on the field. Hoping they can win the NFC North with 7 White starters or so.

Edit: Glasgow starting. Thanks Phall.
 
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Don Wassall

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Cominsky played starter's snaps the second half of last season and I expect that to continue this season even if he's not currently listed that way. Campbell will be a starter soon enough, so I consider the Lions to have four White starters on defense though your depth chart above is correct. Even Rodriguez may get starter's snaps at some point again as their third linebacker, though likely only as a two-down player. So I still consider them the "Whitest" (lol) defense in the league even though technically they only have two starters at the moment.
 

Snow Plow

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Lions defense coming along nicely.
 

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FootballDad

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Jared Goff was the NFC offensive player of the week for week 6. He's been playing phenomenal football this year. Of course he's played well his entire career. Kudos to Mr. Goff and hope that he continues for the rest of this season to shine.
 

Phall

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Jared Goff was the NFC offensive player of the week for week 6. He's been playing phenomenal football this year. Of course he's played well his entire career. Kudos to Mr. Goff and hope that he continues for the rest of this season to shine.

Negotiations are apparently ongoing for Goff's contract extension. He's signed through 2024 on the deal he originally signed with the Rams. Goff could have already been cut with an understated cap hit but outplayed his expectations these past two seasons with an ever-upward trajectory.

I'll be a bit nervous about this until the ink is dry on the paper. GM Brad Holmes and DC Aaron Glenn have combined to create the "whitest" defense in the NFL, with five players (Hutchinson, Anzalone, Campbell, Cominsky, Rodriguez) logging tackles in the box score virtually every week.

The Lions also have a white TE room. Graham Glasgow's ascent to LG through injury means the offensive line is now 3/5 white (on the "blind side").

But for all these positives, Detroit could implode into an unwatchable disaster very quickly by resetting their quarterback position. Behind Goff is the timeless Teddy "Sewerwater" Bridgewater. Our sports journalist class occasionally reminds us that the Lions spent a (completely wasteful) third-round pick on Hendon Hooker. Not only would these two spoil the team's white-friendly aesthetic: I'd have no interest in watching such a downgrade into mediocrity (Bridgewater) or outright ineptitude (Hooker).

So, it is really important that Goff and his agent hammer out an extension soon!
 

Don Wassall

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Malcolm Rodriguez has played no snaps at linebacker the past two games after playing so well as a rookie last year. Jack Campbell is still playing only around half the snaps, while Anzalone is on the field for every play. Derrick Barnes is picking up the other linebacker snaps, so for now the hopes of the Lions having a snowplow at LB are dashed.
 

Snow Plow

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Coach of the year:
Starts up to 10 whites
Doesn’t salivate over players
Doesn’t call out players for negative plays
Respects the reporters asking questions
 

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Leonardfan

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https://nfltraderumors.co/breaking-lions-oc-ben-johnson-staying-in-detroit/

Good news for Goff and the offense. Johnson was probably the most sought after coordinator in the coaching rumor mill so to see him stick around for another year is a welcome surprise. Johnson seemed to be the most coveted candidate by the Redskins.

In other potential good news the Redskins are still meeting with the overrated defensive coordinator Aaron Glenn. Could be addition by subtraction.
 
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Snow Plow

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https://nfltraderumors.co/breaking-lions-oc-ben-johnson-staying-in-detroit/

Good news for Goff and the offense. Johnson was probably the most sought after coordinator in the coaching rumor mill so to see him stick around for another year is a welcome surprise. Johnson seemed to be the most coveted candidate by the Redskins.

In other potential good news the Redskins are still meeting with the overrated defensive coordinator Aaron Glenn. Could be addition by subtraction.
I fully agree…I can’t imagine anyone in the organization would be upset if Glenn was hired away as a head coach.

Ben Johnson knows he will be a head coach in time, but now can get a ring first and potentially have more choices next season.
 

Phall

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I fully agree…I can’t imagine anyone in the organization would be upset if Glenn was hired away as a head coach.

Ben Johnson knows he will be a head coach in time, but now can get a ring first and potentially have more choices next season.
If I understand correctly, the Lions would get a compensatory pick at the end of the 3rd round this spring if some team gets suckered into giving Glenn a head coaching gig. The current Rooney Rule fine print rewards teams that “train up” their diversity candidates.

The Patriots will not get this bonus for promoting their internal diversity candidate - I imagine this would be perceived as unfair.
 

Snow Plow

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Exactly, good call.

the Cleveland Browns, San Francisco 49ers (three special compensatory selections), and Kansas City Chiefs under a 2020 amendment to the league’s Collective Bargaining Agreement, which was agreed upon by the NFL and the NFLPA to promote equal employment opportunities and an inclusive workforce within NFL clubs. This initiative provides that the prior employer-club of a minority employee who has been hired by another club as its head coach or primary football executive (general manager) will receive compensation in the form of a special compensatory draft selection in the third round of each of the next two drafts, or in each of the next three drafts if two minority employees from the employer-club are hired for these positions by another club or clubs.
 

Leonardfan

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Exactly, good call.

the Cleveland Browns, San Francisco 49ers (three special compensatory selections), and Kansas City Chiefs under a 2020 amendment to the league’s Collective Bargaining Agreement, which was agreed upon by the NFL and the NFLPA to promote equal employment opportunities and an inclusive workforce within NFL clubs. This initiative provides that the prior employer-club of a minority employee who has been hired by another club as its head coach or primary football executive (general manager) will receive compensation in the form of a special compensatory draft selection in the third round of each of the next two drafts, or in each of the next three drafts if two minority employees from the employer-club are hired for these positions by another club or clubs.
Sounds like incentive to discriminate against one group of people in favor of another group all under the guise of “equality”
 

Phall

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Sounds like incentive to discriminate against one group of people in favor of another group all under the guise of “equality”
With the caveat that I am definitely no expert here: my guess is that this is the closest way the league can incentivize its pro-black initiative without directly violating US labor laws. The shortest distance between two points would be to simply reward teams for hiring blacks (and women), but our country as a whole is not yet as gay as the NFL.

Keeping Ben Johnson is a big win for the Lions. Another thought that occurred to me is that that this sort of forced cross-pollination, where every staff opening seems to require at least five in-person interviews and teams are rewarded when (some) coaches are hired away, is that it plays into the league's theme of parity (which you can also read as 'mediocrity'). Only the most tenured coaches end up with "coaching trees" of significance, which is incredible to think of in the context that the difference between a "successful" 10-7 season and a "disappointment" 7-10 season can come down to three single game-defining plays, or flips of a coin. There are no proprietary standards of practice, because every assistant on a winning staff is immediately interviewed by multiple franchises.

Regular companies of any size, from startups to Fortune 100s, promote from within (the bigger they are, the more the soft mandates appear for racial and gender equity). I don't need to spell out the multiple key reasons why internal promotion is a helpful practice. The NFL's annual coaching carousel does not follow the logic until you think of the league as one big company rather than a consortium of 32 competing companies. That's why Ben Johnson sticking around is a big deal and is news in and of itself - it bucks the trend set by top-down management.
 

Warhawk_46

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The Lions are signing CFL All-Star Mathiu Betts. the defense line will now have three white men in Hutchinson, Cominsky and Betts.
 

Freethinker

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The Lions are signing CFL All-Star Mathiu Betts. the defense line will now have three white men in Hutchinson, Cominsky and Betts.
Great news!! Mathieu looks like a stud! The French Canadian was undrafted in 2019 but signed with the Bears. Apparently he was one of the last cuts, which is no surprise as uber-cuck Matt Nagy was in charge. Probably for the best as he went on to star in the CFL vs a fringe guy in the NFL. Hopefully now he can step in and shine right away.
 

Bucky

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Gotta love what Detroit is doing on Defense. Never thought I’d say that!
 

Don Wassall

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Guys the 2023 season is over, team related posts should go in the general team threads until we begin the 2024 threads later this year.
 
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