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Lions notes: Travis Swanson is playing well as a Dolphin

The Lions’ former starting center has found some stability in Miami.

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NFL: Scrimmage-New York Jets at Washington Redskins Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

The Detroit Lions will head down to Miami this week to face a Dolphins team with some familiar faces. Akeem Spence, whom the Lions traded away earlier this offseason, will be down there waiting, as will be reserve interior offensive lineman Wesley Johnson.

But perhaps the biggest former Lions player on the Dolphins now is center Travis Swanson. A four-year starter with the Lions, Swanson was not retained by the Lions this offseason, and after a stint with the Jets, the Dolphins swooped him up in September as a backup.

However, Miami’s starting center Daniel Kilgore left Week 4’s game against the Patriots with an injury and the starting job has been Swanson’s ever since. In the two-and-a-half games Swanson has played at center, he’s done pretty darn well:

Swanson had an up-and-down career in Detroit, but he was never considered a horrible player, so it doesn’t come as much surprise that he’s doing well in Miami. Detroit will have an up-and-close look at him on Sunday, as Kilgore was placed on IR earlier this month.

  • Dave Birkett revisited the question about franchise tagging Ezekiel Ansah. Obviously the move looks bad in retrospect, but Birkett looks at the other seven players franchised this year to see if the Lions are alone in their lack of production so far.

  • Check out the top 10 plays from the Lions defense over the first five games of the season:

  • Bad news for the Minnesota Vikings. Their first-round pick, cornerback Mike Hughes, tore his ACL in Sunday’s game and will be placed on IR:

Hughes had two starts, one fumble recovery and one interception—a pick-six—in six games played.

  • Turns out adding LeGarrette Blount, using a first-round pick on an offensive lineman, and changing your offensive line coach may actually do some good: