One result of winning games? National recognition. For the Detroit Lions, who have now won four of their last five games, that national notoriety is starting to take shape.
After their blowout win in Week 13 against the Jacksonville Jaguars, several Lions made moves in Pro Bowl voting. Justin Rogers of the Detroit News has the latest updates. Here’s the long and short of it. Second overall pick Aidan Hutchinson went from being sixth among defensive ends last week to fifth this week. Starting safeties DeShon Elliott and Kerby Joseph also moved up—Elliott from seventh to sixth, and Joseph from eight to seventh.
Among the 2021 draft class, right tackle Penei Sewell moved to eighth among tackles after being ninth last week, while star receiver Amon-Ra St. Brown rose to ninth among receivers after being in 10th place. Lastly, All-Pro center Frank Ragnow remained steady at the fourth spot among all centers.
Obviously Pro Bowl fan voting isn’t the best marker to look at when it comes to a team’s progress, but still, the fact that the Lions have this many young players garnering votes among their respective positions is a promising sign.
Hutchinson leads rookies in just about every major pass-rushing metric. Both Elliott and Joseph are playing really good football over the last five weeks and are a major reason things have improved so much in the Lions’ secondary.
After a stellar rookie season, Sewell picked up right where he left off in year two, and is quickly becoming one of the best tackles in football. St. Brown is quarterback Jared Goff’s favorite target, and already one of the better route runners in the league. Ragnow seems to be finding his form all while trying to manage a foot injury he suffered earlier in the year.
The best part of this development? All of these players are young—with the oldest being Elliott at 25 and Ragnow at 26. These last five weeks have been really fun, but I find myself thinking “Just wait until these guys grow up a little bit more.”
Stop it, Morgan. Be present.
Anyways, you can vote for your favorite Lions here, as well as via Twitter.
And now, onto the rest of today’s notes:
- Our friend Kent Lee Platte of Pro Football Network, aka MathBomb, dropped a mock draft where he addressed two needs for the Lions with their pair of first-round picks.
- The Lions have a young core that is really beginning to click. Is this the foundation of a team that competes for the playoffs on a yearly basis? Dave Birkett of the Free Press thinks it could be.
- For a unit that was really thin only a few weeks ago, this may be the healthiest they have looked all year. Kyle Meinke of MLive has more on the Lions’ depth in the receiver room.
The Lions have one of the best offenses in the NFL. With DJ Chark, Josh Reynolds, Amon-Ra St. Brown and Jameson Williams all returning in recent weeks, they played better than ever against Jacksonville— kyle meinke (@kmeinke) December 7, 2022
Now Quintez Cephus is back on the practice field, too https://t.co/krcdYkM10D pic.twitter.com/uwtb7e4KMR
- The Lions’ loss to the Minnesota Vikings still bothers Dan Campbell. Justin Rogers of the Detroit News has more on the decision that still “burns” the Lions’ coach.
Lions playoff talk is all the rage, but it would be a more realistic conversation had the team finished off the Vikings early in the year. That loss, and his role in it, still burns coach Dan Campbell: https://t.co/DVmbXHoVEN— Justin Rogers (@Justin_Rogers) December 7, 2022
- If you are ready for a hearty serving of Honolulu blue kool-aid, look no further. Nick Baumgardner of The Athletic has you covered on how this Lions team is turning a corner.
- ESPN’s Eric Woodyard writes about how the Lions’ confidence is soaring ahead of their matchup with the division-leading Vikings.