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Lions-Browns snap counts: Playing time raises more questions about depth chart

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There’s a lot going on here, and it does little to answer some of the bigger roster questions.

NFL: Cleveland Browns at Detroit Lions Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports

Here’s a look at the Detroit Lions’ snap counts from their preseason finale against the Cleveland Browns.

Offense:

Quarterbacks

Jake Rudock: 47 (71%)
Matt Cassel: 19 (29%)

Running backs

Dwayne Washington: 63 (95%) — 3 special teams (9%)
Zach Zenner: 3 (5%) — 1 (3%)

Tight ends

Sean McGrath: 22 (33%) — 7 (21%)
Marcus Lucas: 19 (29%) — 17 (50%)
Michael Roberts: 18 (27%) — 4 (12%)
Hakeem Valles: 16 (24%) — 10 (29%)

Wide receivers

Dontez Ford: 49 (74%) — 15 (44%)
Chris Lacy: 43 (65%) — 13 (38%)
Brian Brown: 41 (62%) — 8 (24%)
Teo Redding: 31 (47%) — 10 (29%)
Jace Billingsley: 14 (21%) — 9 (26%)
Brandon Powell: 12 (18%) — 7 (21%)
Bradley Marquez: DNP

Offensive tackles
Dan Skipper: 38 (58%) — 3 (9%)
Brian Mihalik: 38 (58%) — 3 (9%)
Jamar McGloster: 31 (47%) — 2 (6%)
Tyrell Crosby: 28 (42%) — 3 (9%)
Corey Robinson: 18 (27%)

Guards/centers

Wesley Johnson: 63 (95%) — 3 (9%)
John Montelus: 37 (56%) — 3 (9%)
Leo Koloamatangi: 35 (53%) — 1 (2%)
Joe Dahl: 28 (42%)
Kenny Wiggins: 13 (20%)

Observations:

  • Shout out to Dwayne Washington and Wesley Johnson for being the iron men of the game, only missing three offensive snaps the entire game. However, that’s probably not a good sign for either of their roster security. Washington is obviously out, but Johnson is in a heated battle with several other interior linemen.
  • Speaking of the o-line positional battle, interesting to see Kenny Wiggins only get 13 snaps. Maybe he’s leading the way in the camp battle?
  • Now to the tight ends. Michael Roberts got a significant amount of playing time, which can’t be good for him. The fact that Hakeem Valles saw the field less is just another sign that Roberts is lower than him on the depth chart. Roberts could very well be on the roster bubble right now.
  • No one thinks that Bradley Marquez is making this team, but the coaching staff didn’t even give him a shot to showcase his talent. Tough break for him.

Defense:

Defensive end

Anthony Zettel: 39 (53%) — 5 (15%)
Alex Barrett: 21 (29%) — 15 (44%)
Cam Johnson: 21 (29%) — 1 (3%)
Jeremiah Valoaga: 20 (27%) — 8 (24%)
Da’Shawn Hand: 16 (22%) — 5 (15%)

Defensive tackle

Jeremiah Ledbetter: 50 (68%) — 3 (9%)
Christian Ringo: 39 (53%) — 5 (15%)
Josh Fatu: 17 (23%)
A’Shawn Robinson: 14 (19%) — 1 (3%)

Linebackers

Jonathan Freeny: 59 (81%) — 9 (26%)
Darnell Sankey: 41 (56%) — 16 (47%)
Trevor Bates: 38 (52%) — 13 (38%)
Freddie Bishop: 31 (42%) — 14 (41%)
Eli Harold: 24 (33%) — 13 (38%)
Chad Meredith: 11 (15%) — 14 (41%)

Cornerbacks

Dexter McDougle: 58 (79%) — 16 (47%)
Sterling Moore: 57 (78%) — 9 (26%)
DeShawn Shead: 48 (66%) — 21 (62%)
Chris Jones: 37 (51%) — 12 (35%)
Mike Ford: 33 (45%) — 15 (44%)
Teez Tabor: 16 (22%) — 5 (15%)

Safety

Charles Washington: 52 (71%) — 13 (38%)
Tracy Walker: 40 (55%) — 9 (26%)
Marcus Cromartie: 20 (27%) — 8 (24)
Rolan Milligan: 1 (1%)

Observations:

  • There’s a lot going on here, and not a lot of it makes sense, but let’s start with Anthony Zettel. Zettel started this camp as a starter, and the fact that he played over half the snaps in the preseason finale cannot be a good sign. Maybe the Lions were planning on having someone else play in the preseason—say, a free agent addition or something—and had to fall back on Zettel. But the fact that Zettel had to play that much on Thursday should leave him concerned about his status.
  • Miles Killebrew has been transitioning to linebacker for the past few weeks, but apparently the coaching staff has seen enough to evaluate how it’s going. He didn’t play at all on Thursday, meaning he’s either a roster lock or a roster cut lock. Really helpful, I know.
  • A’Shawn Robinson. You were a second-round pick. You shouldn’t be playing in these games.
  • Jonathan Freeny is firmly on the roster bubble after playing a whopping 81 percent of snaps. The Lions’ linebacker situation is just as confusing as ever, though it looks like Christian Jones is safe after sitting out the finale.

Special teams

Ryan Santoso: 14 (41%)
Don Muhlbach: 10 (29%)
Sam Martin: 4 (12%)

Observations:

  • Thanks for playing, Ryan Santoso. Good luck.