With OTAs underway and the Detroit Lions roster somewhat settled at 90 players, the competition to make the final 53-man roster is on. Depth charts are in the midst of being formulated and players are likely lining each other up to see who stands between them and a job in September.
But offseason practices aren’t just about making an impression to land on the final roster. Several players are hoping to prove they can overcome an injury or prove themselves worthy of another contract next year or simply prove to themselves they deserve to be in the league.
So today’s Question of the Day is:
Which Detroit Lions player has the most to prove in 2017?
ESPN asked this question of all 32 teams, and Michael Rothstein believes Nevin Lawson has the most to prove.
Lawson handled himself better than his statistics would indicate, but the Lions needed to bring in some new players, too. They focused on secondary in the draft, including an investment in Teez Tabor as a second-round pick. That would mean Lawson, who is in a contract year, is going to have a lot of pressure to perform or potentially be replaced in 2018 -- or sooner.
Lawson is a good answer, but he’s not my choice.
My answer: Ameer Abdullah. We recently found out that Abdullah suffered a Lisfranc injury, which is widely considered one of the most serious football injuries. Though he says he’s 100 percent right now, Abdullah still has a lot to prove to earn the confidence of the team back.
The team showed faith in Abdullah by not taking a running back in the NFL Draft, but now he must return the favor. If Abdullah wants to be a part of this team’s long-term plans at running back, he’ll have to prove that his impressive performance in the first six quarters of the 2016 season wasn’t just a fluke. He’ll have to overcome a lot, but he also will have every possible opportunity to seize the running back of the future role. No player has a more important 2017 season than Ameer Abdullah.