The Detroit Lions are one of 31 teams trying to figure out how things went wrong in 2016 and the best way to go about fixing the team. While everyone would love to build the perfect team, the truth is every team has to make concessions. No team is without their faults and no team has the capacity to make their 2017 team flawless.
Without the ability, nor the cap room, to create a perfect roster, teams will have to make compromises. In other words, franchises will have to make certain vulnerabilities a priority over other, less pressing issues. Some of those decisions will be made based on the personnel available, while other will be made based on the magnitude of the need.
For the Detroit Lions, there are a lot of problems to fix. However, chief among their 2016 problems were the lack of a running game on offense and the nonexistent pass rush on defense. So today’s Question of the Day is:
What should be the Lions’ highest priority in 2017: fixing the running game or developing a passer rush?
My answer: Developing a pass rush. While, obviously, the Lions absolutely need to address both problems this offseason, the Lions offense revealed in 2016 that they can get by offensively without a running game—Matthew Stafford is that good.
Defensively, the team failed on every level, and while the problems go well beyond the lack of a pass rush, a better defensive line has the ability to mask a lot of other issues. Detroit’s talent on the defensive line is thinner than possibly any other position on the team, and it needs to be the primary focus both in free agency and the draft. Otherwise, we could be looking at the worst defense for the second year in a row.