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Lions-Vikings snap counts: Detroit limiting Jarrad Davis’ playing time on passing downs

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The Lions are making a serious effort to keep Davis out of the passing game.

NFL: Minnesota Vikings at Detroit Lions Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports

Here’s a look at the Detroit Lions’ snap counts from their Week 12 game against the Minnesota Vikings.

Offense:

Quarterbacks

Matthew Stafford: 59 snaps (100%)

Running backs

Theo Riddick: 29 (49%)
Ameer Abdullah: 26 (44%)
Zach Zenner: 6 (10%) — 17 special teams snaps (53%)

Tight ends

Eric Ebron: 29 (49%)
Darren Fells: 27 (46%) — 11 (34%)
Michael Roberts: 12 (20%) — 5 (16%)

Wide receivers

Marvin Jones Jr.: 59 (100%)
Golden Tate: 52 (88%) — 1 (3%)
Kenny Golladay: 40 (68%)
TJ Jones: 15 (25%) — 11 (34%)

Offensive tackles

Rick Wagner: 59 (100%) — 5 (16%)
Taylor Decker 59 (100%)
Brian Mihalik: 0 (0%) — 11 (24%)

Guards/centers

T.J. Lang: 59 (100%) — 5 (16%)
Graham Glasgow: 59 (100%) — 5 (16%)
Travis Swanson: 42 (71%) — 3 (9%)
Corey Robinson: 17 (29%) — 5 (16%)

Observations:

  • Nothing too surprising on the offensive side of the ball. Eric Ebron edged out Darren Fells this week, but every week the two seem to trade places at the top of playing time.
  • Golden Tate seems like he’s back at full participation, after seeing a decreased role in the offense following his shoulder injury against the Saints. This was the first game since then that he participated in over 80 percent of offensive plays.
  • Still no special teams snaps for Taylor Decker. At this point, it seems like the Lions are doing whatever they can to protect his shoulder, while also having him on the field on offense.

Defense:

Defensive end

Anthony Zettel: 60 (82%)
Cornelius Washington: 36 (49%) — 7 (22%)
Ezekiel Ansah: 32 (44%) — 1 (3%)
Kasim Edebali: 23 (32%) — 1 (3%)

Defensive tackle

A’Shawn Robinson: 50 (68%) — 9 (28%)
Akeem Spence: 48 (66%) — 2 (6%)
Christian Ringo: 23 (32%)
Jeremiah Ledbetter: 22 (32%) — 13 (41%)

Linebackers

Tahir Whitehead: 73 (100%) — 8 (25%)
Jarrad Davis: 54 (74%) — 7 (22%)
Paul Worrilow: 35 (48%) — 19 (59%)
Nick Bellore: 4 (5%) — 26 (81%)
Jalen Reeves-Maybin: 1 (1%) — 13 (41%)
Steve Longa: 0 (0%) — 19 (59%)

Cornerbacks

Darius Slay: 72 (99%) — 8 (25%)
Quandre Diggs: 38 (52%) — 9 (28%)
Nevin Lawson: 35 (48%) — 15 (47%)
DJ Hayden: 33 (45%) — 5 (16%)
Teez Tabor: 14 (19%) — 10 (31%)

Safety

Glover Quin: 73 (100%) — 8 (25%)’
Tavon Wilson: 44 (60%)
Miles Killebrew: 32 (44%) — 18 (56%)
Don Carey: 0 (0%) — 26 (81%)
Charles Washington: 0 (0%) — 19 (59%)

Observations:

  • Last week, we wondered whether Jarrad Davis’ decreased playing time (he usually plays 100 percent of snaps) was because of performance or game-planning. It appears it’s a little bit of both. For the second straight week, he saw under 80 percent of snaps, and Pro Football Focus seemed to pinpoint the reason why:

The Lions made a concerted effort to get Davis off the field in obvious passing downs as he played on just 19 of 36 passing downs.

In his place, the Lions put Teez Tabor and Miles Killebrew on the field more often.

  • The Lions brought Ezekiel Ansah along slowly, only giving him 44 percent of snaps in his return from injury.
  • Detroit’s rotation at defensive tackle was much more reasonable this week after handing Akeem Spence and A’Shawn Robinson an extremely heavy load last week. Christian Ringo, fresh off the practice squad, saw a significant 32 percent of snaps on Thursday.
  • The Lions didn’t find much of a role for Jalen Reeves-Maybin, who also returned from injury this week. The rookie linebacker played in just one defensive snap.