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Detroit Lions Bubble Watch: Predicting the final roster spots on offense

A final look at the closest roster battles on offense:

Indianapolis Colts v Detroit Lions Photo by Leon Halip/Getty Images

The Detroit Lions’ preseason finale against the Indianapolis Colts provided the final opportunity for Dan Campbell and company to evaluate their roster. While the Lions offense got off to a really solid start in the game, they scored just three points in the second half, speaking to the team’s struggling depth.

However, the game did provide some clarity on the latest camp battles and the bubble players fighting for a spot on the roster. Though injuries may prove to be an unpredictable mitigating factor here, our staff made their final predictions for the fate of bubble players on the Lions offense.

Take a look:

Final Lions Bubble Watch: Defense

Player Jeremy Reisman Ryan Mathews Mike Payton Hamza Alex Reno Erik Schlitt John Whiticar Jerry Mallory TOTAL Change from last week
Player Jeremy Reisman Ryan Mathews Mike Payton Hamza Alex Reno Erik Schlitt John Whiticar Jerry Mallory TOTAL Change from last week
NT John Penisini IN OUT OUT OUT OUT IN IN OUT 3 0
DT Bruce Hector OUT IN OUT OUT OUT OUT OUT IN 2 +1
DT Kevin Strong IN IN IN IN IN IN OUT IN 7 -1
DT Da'Shawn Hand IN IN IN IN IN IN IN IN 8 0
EDGE Austin Bryant IN IN IN IN IN IN IN IN 8 +2
EDGE Charles Harris IN OUT OUT OUT OUT OUT OUT OUT 1 -3
EDGE Robert McCray OUT OUT OUT OUT OUT OUT OUT OUT 0 0
LB Jalen Reeves-Maybin IN IN IN IN IN IN IN IN 8 0
LB Jahlani Tavai OUT OUT OUT OUT OUT OUT IN OUT 1 +1
LB Tavante Beckett OUT OUT OUT OIT OUT OUT OUT OUT 0 0
LB Anthony Pittman OUT OUT IN OUT OUT OUT OUT OUT 1 -1
CB Jerry Jacobs OUT OUT OUT OUT OUT OUT OUT OUT 0 0
CB Corn Elder IN IN OUT IN OUT OUT IN IN 5 +5
CB AJ Parker IN IN IN IN IN IN IN IN 8 0
CB Nickell Robey-Coleman OUT OUT OUT OUT IN IN OUT IN 3 -5
CB Bobby Price IN IN IN OUT IN IN OUT IN 6 +1
S Jalen Elliott OUT OUT OUT OUT OUT OUT IN OUT 1 -1

NEW TO BUBBLE WATCH:

RB Godwin Igwebuike — Probably should have been added last week after scoring a touchdown in Pittsburgh. Igwebuike has improved dramatically in the past two weeks since moving from safety to running back. He’s made a serious case for keeping an additional running back, but only Erik has him in.

WR Breshad Perriman — Perriman has been sliding all camp, and Friday may have been the last straw. Detroit wanted a long look at him, and he managed a single catch and two drops. Only three of our staffers have him in after he entered training camp as a presumed lock.

Trending up

QB Tim Boyle (+3) — A bit odd that Boyle lands on this list after suffering what appears to be somewhat serious injury on Friday, but there is logic to it. Boyle, again, got the start over Blough, which is telling. He also looked pretty darn good, and Dan Campbell has to like the grit he showed by leading a touchdown drive through his hand injury. Everyone still has David Blough in, but the majority of the staff has the Lions keeping three quarterbacks now.

WR Tom Kennedy (+3) — Kennedy barely played in the preseason, which is either a really good sign or a neutral one. The coaching staff sung his praises this week, and no wide depth receiver managed to make an impression in the Colts game. The final score: Kennedy seven in votes to Perriman’s three.

OT Dan Skipper (+2) — Okay, this one puzzles me. While Skipper had been playing well and likely would have had a legitimate chance to unseat Matt Nelson as the team’s fourth offensive tackle, he was carted off on Friday night. I guess half of our staff is optimistic that it won’t be a long-term injury, but even so. I’m not sure keeping Skipper would be the right move here. Although I’ll be the first to admit that Nelson’s struggles are troubling.

TE Brock Wright (+2) — Wright likely gets the bump here simply from coming in the game before Alize Mack for the first time this preseason. Wright did pull in an 11-yard catch, but didn’t show much else.

RB Jermar Jefferson (+1) — Jefferson continued to hold the Lions’ third RB spot on Friday, and showed why against the Colts. The staff unanimously believes he’ll make the team; the question is whether a fourth will join him.

RB Craig Reynolds (+1) — Outside of a nice 11-yard pickup on a screen play, it was a quiet day from Reynolds. Still, he gained one more follower, perhaps because he got playing time fairly early in the game.

G Tommy Kraemer (+1) — I’m not feeling great about Logan Stenberg’s injury late in the game, so out of necessity, I’ve got them keeping Kraemer, who played every snap of the preseason finale and earned Dan Campbell’s praise after the preseason finale.

Trending down

WR Javon McKinley (-5) — I never quite understood our staff’s interest in keeping McKinley, but everyone jumped ship after he played in just seven snaps in the preseason finale.

TE Alize Mack (-4) — Mack was the final tight end on the field on Friday and managed just a single catch for three yards. Just three staffers have him in, after he started camp firmly in the TE3 position.

RB Dedrick Mills (-1) — Mills had a solid preseason, including a decent finale, but he was just overshadowed by both Igwebuike and Reynolds.

G Logan Stenberg (-1) — Losing a job because of injury would be a tough way to go out for Stenberg. Let’s hope he’s okay.