For Detroit the first preseason game is in the books. Overall the Lions showed well in their 24-10 win over the Colts. Now, I don’t want to get too in-depth with a preseason game considering nearly half of these guys won’t make the team. However, there are a few big things to be taken away from this game. Here are my top five:
— NFL (@NFL) August 13, 2017
5) The Lions have a legitimate back up quarterback
Second year quarterback, Jake Rudock, played most of the first half after Matthew Stafford went to the bench after one quick series. This was Rudock’s first real chance to solidify his job as the backup quarterback after spending most of last year on the practice squad. In this first real opportunity, the former University of Michigan quarterback was brilliant. He finished the game 13-21 for 142 yards and two touchdowns. Beyond the stats, Rudock seems to have a strong command of the pocket and had pretty good ball placement overall. Rudock could be the best backup QB the Lions have had in quite some time.
4) A’Shawn Robinson is developing
When the Lions drafted Robinson in the second round of last year’s draft, I was very skeptical. He brought little pass rush ability and he wasn’t particularly disruptive as a run defender. His saving grace was an extremely high football IQ that always left him in great position. However, Robinson seems to have improved his physical attributes to re-establish the line of scrimmage. He got penetration on more than one occasion with a powerful bull rush. If Robinson can consistently win his one-on-one matchup, on top of what he brings from a mental standpoint, he could quickly develop into a key contributor on the Lions defense.
3) Graham Glasgow struggled
Set to be the Lions starting left guard, I was hoping to see Glasgow really establish himself going into his second year. Sadly, that was not the case. He was beat pretty regularly while working with the starting offensive line. Even when he moved to center and worked with the backups (while playing against backups) Glasgow had a lot of problems. Considering that left tackle Taylor Decker will miss several weeks due to injury, Stafford’s blindside could be a concern as we enter the season.
Kerry Hyder is out for the season. Crushing news.
— Detroit Lions Fans (@DetLionBlood) August 13, 2017
2) Kerry Hyder’s injury
Unfortunately, the big take away from this game will be Hyder’s injury. He left the game very early after going down with a hurt Achilles. It didn’t look serious initially, but Hyder stayed down and eventually had to be carted off the field. The injury has since been described as “serious” and will likely end his season. Obviously this is terrible news for a Lions pass rush that’s already looking like one of the worst in the league, but it’s even worse for Hyder who’s career was just starting to take off after a career year last season.
1) The rookies shine
For me, the most interesting part of the preseason is watching the rookies. Watching this Lions class made things particularly exciting because they all showed well. First round pick Jarrad Davis looked good in stepping up against the run and dropping back vs the pass (although he needs to read and react more and think less). Teez Tabor did well in coverage and made good tackles whenever the opportunity presented itself. Kenny Golladay stole the show with a few impressive catches, including two touchdowns. Jalen Reeves-Maybin looked good in special teams role and played well later as a reserve linebacker. Overall, there’s a lot to be excited for with this rookie class.