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Projecting the Lions depth chart: Cornerback

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What will the Detroit Lions depth chart look like at cornerback by the end of training camp? What is the top camp battle to watch at this position? Let's take a look.

Gregory Shamus

As the offseason winds down, we're going to project each position on the Detroit Lions depth chart and also take a look at some training camp battles. Next up is the cornerback position.

Starters: Darius Slay, Rashean Mathis, Bill Bentley (nickel)

The top part of the Lions' cornerback depth chart is actually pretty straightforward. Following the release of Chris Houston, it's clear that Darius Slay and Rashean Mathis will be the two outside starters, and Bill Bentley will continue to serve as the No. 1 nickelback. Just how effective this group will be remains to be seen, but it's a safe bet that these players will be atop the depth chart.

Top backups: Chris Greenwood, Nevin Lawson, Cassius Vaughn

The backup spots are not quite as clear at this point. We don't know just how many spots will be set aside for the cornerback position, and there's a lot of uncertainty with the players competing for those spots. Fourth-round pick Nevin Lawson should make the team, but those other spots are completely up for grabs. I personally think Chris Greenwood and Cassius Vaughn will emerge to make the team when the final cuts are made.

Other players: Jonte Green, Aaron Hester, Mohammed Seisay

The most notable player I have on the outside looking in is Jonte Green. Based on the way things stand right now, somebody is going to have to be left out, and I simply went with Green. Lawson is almost certainly going to make the team given his draft status, and I think Vaughn will provide solid veteran depth. And picking between Green and Greenwood, I view Greenwood as having more potential to make an impact with the Lions set to utilize more press coverage, so I went with him.

Camp battle to watch: Chris Greenwood vs. Cassius Vaughn vs. Jonte Green

This particular battle could be for only one spot, but I tend to think it's for two. Greenwood and Green, who were both drafted in 2012, need to show something this summer in order to remain a part of the Lions' plans going forward, and Vaughn needs to show that he can provide good depth at the position after being a part-time starter in Indianapolis the last two seasons. It's entirely possible that this camp battle could get a new face or two by the time training camp is over if concerns remain at this position, but for now, I see these three players as the main competition for the final spots at cornerback.

Previously: Quarterback, running back, fullback, wide receiver, tight end, offensive tackle, offensive guard/center, defensive end, defensive tackle, linebacker