Detroit Lions training camp has been underway for more than a week, and we're just days away from the start of the preseason. Once the preseason actually begins, we will get a much better idea of where certain position battles stand, but we have already learned quite a bit since practice opened last week. With that in mind, let's check in on some of the Lions' position battles on offense and see where things stand going into Saturday's preseason opener.
Quarterback: Kellen Moore vs. James Franklin vs. the rest of the roster
With Franklin not getting many reps at quarterback, it's hard to say there's a battle between him and Moore at this point. The preseason could certainly change that if the Lions give Franklin a chance to play, but he's really competing for a spot on the practice squad right now. Moore, meanwhile, is still competing with players at other positions for a roster spot, and he will try to convince the Lions that they should keep him around as their third quarterback.
Current favorite: Nobody. With several other positions on the roster overflowing with players who are capable of making the team and players who could actually contribute (mainly on special teams), I just can't see the Lions keeping three quarterbacks this year.
Fullback: Montell Owens vs. Jed Collins
With the release of the Lions' depth chart on Tuesday, we learned that Owens is currently listed as the starting fullback over Collins. This seemed a bit odd considering Owens was previously listed as a running back by the Lions, and it's even odder when you compare their size. Owens is only 5-foot-10 and 225 pounds, while Collins is 6-foot-1 and 252 pounds. Simply from the perspective of who you would want serving as your traditional lead-blocking fullback, Collins seems to make more sense, at least on paper.
Current favorite: Too early to tell. We really need more information on how the Lions plan to use these fullbacks before declaring a favorite for the starting job. Owens may be listed as the starter right now, but I'm not convinced that this is going to be a permanent thing by any means.
Wide receiver: Ryan Broyles vs. Kris Durham vs. Jeremy Ross vs. Kevin Ogletree vs. Corey Fuller
There are a few different position battles taking place among this group of receivers. One of the battles is for the No. 3 spot on the Lions depth chart, and Ogletree seems to be ahead of the pack based on how the reps have been divided up so far during camp.
The other battles are simply for roster spots. No frontrunners have necessarily emerged at this point for the final couple spots at wide receiver, but it's a safe bet that Ross will make the team no matter what since he's the Lions' returner. It's also a safe bet right now that TJ Jones will not factor into this position battle because he's still on the PUP list. If he is activated in the near future, he could get back into the mix, but I've replaced him as a candidate to make the team with Fuller, who has seemingly had a strong start to camp.
Current favorite: Kevin Ogletree. I feel pretty comfortable calling Ogletree the favorite for both a roster spot and the No. 3 role at receiver. As for the other spots, it's too early to tell right now.
Offensive tackle: LaAdrian Waddle vs. Corey Hilliard
Waddle and Hilliard have gotten an equal number of reps so far during camp. There's a rotation in place where Waddle is the No. 1 right tackle one day and Hilliard is the No. 1 right tackle the next. This is an indication that the two players are pretty even right now in the race for the starting right tackle job.
Current favorite: LaAdrian Waddle. The reps may be even, but this is still Waddle's job to lose in my mind. Unless Hilliard clearly establishes himself as the better option at right tackle, I just can't see him starting given what Waddle did last season in the No. 1 role.