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T.J. Lang makes ‘All-Penalties Team’ in first year with Detroit Lions

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After a pretty clean career with Green Bay, Lang was suddenly one of the most penalized linemen in 2017.

NFL: Detroit Lions at Green Bay Packers Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

Last year, T.J. Lang made the Pro Bowl with the Detroit Lions. Though he was an injury replacement, it was the second straight Pro Bowl for the veteran offensive guard.

But it wasn’t all good news for Lang. Not only was his season littered with injuries that caused him miss three games, but he also committed a lot of penalties. So much, in fact, that he was named to SportFacts’ 2017 All-Penalties Team.

The list curates a team based on players who were called for the most penalties at their position. According to the site, Lang committed seven penalties for 70 yards throughout the season. In Lang’s defense, that is the fewest amount of penalties of any other offensive lineman that made the team.

It’s a bit odd to see Lang on this list, considering how clean of a player he has been throughout his career. Conspiracy theorists may point to the league’s perceived leniency against the Green Bay Packers when it comes to holding.

The stats are certainly compelling. Just take a look at his career penalty stats as a starter (as provided by NFLPenalties.com):

2017 (13 games): 7 penalties, 70 yards
2016 (13 games): 4 penalties, 35 yards
2015 (15 games): 2 penalties, 15 yards
2014 (16 games): 3 penalties, 35 yards
2013 (16 games): 5 penalties, 30 yards
2012 (16 games): 4 penalties, 35 yards
2011 (16 games): 6 penalties, 30 yards

As you can see, 2017 was a clear outlier in Lang’s career. The closest he’s come in terms of 70 penalty yardage accepted in 2017 was last year, when he had half of that.

So while Lang may have made this list last year, there’s nothing to suggest in his history that this may be the start of a trend. Unless, of course, you believe the Packers truly get preferential treatment...