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Notes: The Lions’ pass rush is worst in the NFL by a large margin

Nobody home.

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Detroit Lions v Green Bay Packers Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images

Last year, the Detroit Lions had a uniquely bad pass rush. Opposing quarterbacks averaged nearly 3.05 seconds to throw the ball against Detroit’s defense. No one else in the league was over the 2.95 mark. They also ranked last is ESPN’s pass rush win rate—which measure whether a pass rusher is able to beat his block within 2.5 seconds.

Well, we’re here in 2020 and we’re writing an identical article. The Lions’ pass rush win rate is, again, the worst in the NFL. Even worse, it’s not even close.

Last year, the Lions finished with a pass rush win rate of 24 percent. This year, that number is at 19 percent. The next closest team? The Cincinnati Bengals at 30 percent. Oh, and in case you were wondering where they fell when it comes to run stop rate.... well, you probably already know. They’re 29th with a rate of just 27 percent.

Lions coaches continue to downplay the issue. Defensive coordinator Cory Undlin said this week that their treatment pass rush is dependent on their game plan for the opposing quarterback.

“Some guys, it’s really hard to get there, and the emphasis of that quarterback is not necessarily to try blitz him or hit him,” Undlin said this week. “You obviously want to put pressure on him, put the clock on him. Each guy is different.”

There’s certainly some truth to what Undlin says, but with a pass rush so incomparably bad, it’s hard to defend what the Lions defense is—and isn’t—doing.

  • Jeff Daniels gave all the feels about being a Lions fan to Rich Eisen:

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  • Not sure it really means all that much, but the Lions use motion at the snap at the lowest rate of any NFL team through two weeks:

  • RIP Gale Sayers: