Although there aren’t a ton of great things to say after a blowout loss, at least one Detroit Lions player is receiving some praise this week.
Rookie Penei Sewell received the highest Pro Football Focus grade among NFL tackles this week at a 91.0. That’s the highest grade of his rookie campaign by almost 10 points.
On top of that, he also made PFF’s Team of the Week, and rookie of the week.
“Sewell was clean in the run game and finished with a Week 14-leading 93.5 run-block grade,” PFF’s Anthony Treash writes.
“Through the first five weeks, Sewell ranked 50th of 65 qualifying tackles — so this is quite the turnaround from the rookie that entered the year with sky-high expectations.”
On Monday, Dan Campbell reflected that in the final stretch of the 2021 season, the organization is still pleased they used their first-round pick on Sewell.
“I would say the decision to select him where we did has been a good one—a real good one—because he’s gone in there and had to move from right back to left, back to right. He’s had some ups and downs, and he’s on the upward curve. He’s grown,” Campbell said. “Anytime you don’t have success, you want to learn from it. He’s really done that and just improved.”
And onto your notes.
- “This is, arguably, the least-talented roster in the league when it’s healthy, let alone when a third of the roster is injured or ailing.” The Athletic’s Chris Burke offers observations from Sunday’s defeat. ($)
- Grades, grades, grades. They’re.... Not good. Here’s some from The Detroit News’s Justin Rogers, some from Sports Illustrated’s All Lions, and some from CBS Sports’s John Breech.
- In almost a glass-half-full way, the Detroit Free Press’ Carlos Monarrez explains how this ugly finish to the season will show which players are foundation pieces. ($)
- Detroitlions.com’s Tim Twentyman tackles the Lions short-handed woes in this week’s Four Downs.
- In case you missed it, the Broncos paid tribute to Demaryius Thomas, who unexpectedly passed away last week at the age of 33, by taking the field with only 10 men—leaving the “X” receiver position open that Thomas held for eight seasons.