The 2010s will likely go down as the decade in which the Detroit Lions pulled themselves out of the depth of hell to become an average team again. From 2010 to 2019, the Lions posted a 72-87-1 record, made the postseason three times, and sent 11 different players to the Pro Bowl.
Now the 2010s Lions have one more accomplishment under their belt: a member of the NFL’s All-Decade team on each side of the ball.
On Monday, the NFL Pro Football Hall of Fame announced the roster of the All-Decade team, and two former Lions made the list. On offense Calvin Johnson made the team, alongside Antonio Brown, Larry Fitzgerald and Julio Jones. On defense, Ndamukong Suh was named one of four defensive tackles, including Geno Atkins, Fletcher Cox and Aaron Donald.
Johnson played solely for the Lions from 2007 to 2015 before retiring suddenly. During his nine-year career, he made the Pro Bowl for each of his final six seasons, led the NFL in receiving yards in back-to-back years (2011, 2012) and set the NFL record for most receiving yards in a season (1964 in 2012).
And while Suh only played from 2010 to 2014 in Detroit, those were his more formidable years in the league. In those five seasons, Suh racked up 36.0 sacks, 238 tackles and 98 quarterback hits. For the next five years spent in Miami, Los Angeles and Tampa, he only totaled 22.5 sacks, 167 tackles and 82 QB hits. He made the Pro Bowl four times in Detroit, while only once the rest of his career (so far).
While this decade has ended in disappointment for the Lions, it’s still a clear step up from the past. Detroit had no players in the previous All-Decade Team of the 2000s. Unsurprisingly, the last Lions player to make an All-Decade Team was Barry Sanders in the 1990s.