The Detroit Lions didn’t put up much of a performance against the Minnesota Vikings last week, and the Pro Football Focus grades reflect that. Against the Dolphins, the Lions’ top four performers had a grade of 74.9 or better. Against the Vikings, they didn’t have a single player on offense with a grade that high.
Still, there was a notable performance or two, so let’s get into it.
Top 5 Graded Lions Offensive Players from Week 9 (min 15 snaps):— PFF DET Lions (@PFF_Lions) November 5, 2018
1. G - Frank Ragnow, 74.4
2. WR - Marvin Jones, 72.6
3. G - TJ Lang, 68.6
4. TE - Luke Wilson, 66.4
5. RB - Theo Riddick, 65.7#onepride
On a day in which the offensive line was absolutely terrorized, it’s good to see that first-round pick Frank Ragnow actually came out of it fairly unscathed. A 74.4 grade is actually very good by PFF standards these days, and that should give the Lions some hope for the future. Unfortunately, the only other offensive lineman to crack the top five was someone the Lions probably can’t account for in this team’s future. T.J. Lang has been great when he’s been able to stay on the field, but injuries have just dominated his career in the past two years.
Then there’s Matthew Stafford. Stafford obviously didn’t crack the top five, and that’s because he was very bad by PFF’s standards. According to Matt Stopsky of PFF, Stafford earned just a 54.8 grade last week and was credited as responsible for three of the 10 sacks on the day. Additionally, he wasn’t very good with a clean pocket, earning a passing grade of 70.9 on those plays—good for 16th out of 24 qualifying Week 9 quarterbacks.
Damon Harrison stat of the day:— PFF DET Lions (@PFF_Lions) November 5, 2018
# of Games with the Lions: 2
# of Games where he was the highest graded defender on the Lions: 2
I have a feeling this might become a trend. #onepride pic.twitter.com/3Y3N1nQDce
What’s there left to say about Damon Harrison Sr.? The man is already the best player on the Lions defense and he’s only been around for two weeks. He’s an absolute force when he’s in the game and he’s very clearly a perfect fit in Matt Patricia’s system. His 90.3 grade wasn’t enough to make PFF’s Week 9 Team of the Week, but he did grade out as the fourth-best interior lineman for the week.
It may surprise you to see Glover Quin with a great grade, since there were two plays in which his lack of speed and/or slowed reaction time was on display. However, the veteran safety led all defensive backs with four solo tackles on Sunday.
Ezekiel Ansah didn’t crack the top five defensive players in his return, but he did show some promise. Per Stopsky, Ansah was credited with a pressure on three of his 11 pass-rushing snaps, earning him a “win percentage” of 27.3, the sixth highest among qualifying edge defenders in Week 9.
Add in the fact that A’Shawn Robinson continues to play well after his Week 1 benching, and it looks like there may be hope for this defensive line still.