After every Detroit Lions game this season, we’re going to hand a game ball for the best individual performance. Each week, we’ll give a rundown of the top five Lions candidates and leave it up to you to select the winner. Throughout the season, we’ll keep track of who won the award to see which player you thought had the best year.
The top vote getter will receive three points, second place gets two, and third place gets one. We’ll keep a running track during the preseason, but reset once we get to the regular season.
Jace Billingsley - 3 points
Dwayne Washington - 2 points
Zach Zenner - 1 point
Even though it was an overall ugly game, here are this week’s candidates.
Jones had another impressive toe-tapping catch along the sidelines to go along with three other grabs for 65 yards in total. All throughout the preseason we were told of the chemistry between Matthew Stafford and Jones, and now we have visual proof of it. Jones looks like he may be the team’s No. 1.
Though Stafford only led the Lions on one scoring drive in his three attempts, he did just about all he could. On the day, Stafford finished 8-11 for 113 yards and a 105.5 passer rating. Aside from one bad swing pass to Theo Riddick, Stafford was accurate and comfortable manning the high-speed defense. He looks ready.
Wilson had a lot of playing time in the second and third quarters, mostly as the team’s strong safety. Wilson made a big case for the starting strong safety position, coming down several times into the box and making tackles in run support, including at least one tackle for loss. He did have one hiccup in coverage, but on a day where there weren’t a lot of standouts, Wilson’s play was definitely above average.
Whitehead finished with a team-high five tackles, and he was laying the boom out there. For a defense that is lacking in depth at linebacker, Whitehead’s play was a slight relief.
The Lions' second and third string offense didn't do much all game against the Bengals. However, on the Lions' very last drive, Washington was able to get a little something going. The seventh-rounder carried the ball three times for 12 yards on the drive including a 5-yard touchdown run, which was the only time a Lion reached the end zone all game. Washington shed a tackle to convert on the two-point conversion, to boot.