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Fantasy football 2013: Who will break out for Lions?

The Detroit Lions have a few players who could put up some big fantasy numbers in 2013.

Gregory Shamus

The Detroit Lions are expected to have one of the most explosive offenses in the NFL in 2013. At least on paper, the talent is there at quarterback, running back and wide receiver. The Lions' trio of Matthew Stafford, Reggie Bush and Calvin Johnson should produce a lot of points both in real life and in fantasy football.

Johnson and Bush are especially attractive options for fantasy football. Johnson nearly had 2,000 yards receiving last year, and the addition of Bush could give Megatron even more room to work with. And speaking of Bush, he should get a lot of opportunities to get the ball in the Lions' offense, as the first few weeks of the preseason have already shown us.

Once you get beyond the Lions' top three fantasy players, who else is worth drafting or at least keeping an eye on? Wide receiver Ryan Broyles and running back Joique Bell both jump out to me. Broyles, once he's fully up to speed, should become Stafford's second favorite target among the wide receivers. He has the ability to rack up a lot of catches on a consistent basis for the Lions, much like Bell should have the chance to rack up yards on the ground and through the air as the No. 2 running back. He has looked excellent in the preseason, and the Lions almost surely are going to have to play him more going forward.

Other notable fantasy players for the Lions include Mikel Leshoure, Nate Burleson and Brandon Pettigrew. I'd personally stay away from them just because I don't expect them to consistently put up solid numbers. Leshoure's workload will likely go down this year with the addition of Bush and the emergence of Bell, and Burleson just hasn't looked very impressive in the preseason. As for Pettigrew, he is consistently inconsistent, and I definitely will not be drafting him again this year.

A couple other fantasy notes related to the Lions: David Akers could be a pretty solid option at kicker considering how often they have to settle for field goals on offense. Also, the defense of the Lions might be worth a flier based on how many turnovers they've produced so far in the preseason. They're certainly susceptible to giving up a lot of points, but the defense seems to have a lot more playmakers than last year.

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After winning their first NFC North title in 30 years, the Lions have unfinished business this offseason. Stay updated with Jeremy Reisman through Pride of Detroit Direct, our newsletter offering up exclusive analysis. Sign up with NFCNORTH30 to get 30% off after your free trial.