We just got done finishing up our Pride of Detroit Awards, where you decided the best performances and moments from the Detroit Lions 2022 season. It’s a year we won’t soon forget and one that hopefully leads to even greater seasons.
Nationally, the Lions have already received a lot of recognition, too. Four players made the Pro Bowl, one was a second-team All-Pro, and several people within the organization were voted for postseason awards at the NFL Honors, even if none ended up winning.
This week, analytics site Football Outsiders gave out their postseason awards based on the voting of their staff. Much like the NFL Honors, no Lions walked away with any of their awards, but several garnered votes, and Detroit even had a couple of runner-ups.
Let’s take a closer look at some of the most interesting mentions:
Coaching staff/front office:
- Dan Campbell fifth in Head Coach of the Year (8.0% of votes)
- Ben Johnson third in Coordinator of the Year (12.1%)
- Brad Holmes fifth in Executive of the Year (4.8%)
Football Outsiders was a little higher on Campbell and lower on Johnson than the AP voting, but the more notable thing here is Lions general manager Brad Holmes getting some love. For the second straight year, the Lions got a lot of production out of their rookie class, including several Day 3 picks. He also continues to hit on his critical early picks, with Aidan Hutchinson and Penei Sewell emerging as clear foundations of the team.
Speaking of those two...
- Aidan Hutchinson second in Defensive Rookie of the Year (14.9%)
- Penei Sewell fifth in Offensive Lineman of the Year (5.1%)
- Jared Goff t-sixth in Most Improved Player (2.8%)
- Jameson Williams fourth in Breakout Candidate for 2023 (4.2%)
Pro Bowl snubs
Football Outsiders had a category of the most deserving players on offense left off the original Pro Bowl roster. Three Lions made this list, although ironically enough all three ended up making it to the Pro Bowl Games anyways.
- Amon-Ra St. Brown third (14.5%)
- Penei Sewell (8.3%)
- Jared Goff (8.0%)
Football Outsiders writer Vincent Verhei had a little extra to say about the Lions in this category:
“But I want to talk about Detroit. This is a write-in category, with voters free to name any player that comes to mind. And the Lions as a team were so underrated that their top wideout, lineman, and quarterback all received a significant number of votes. That’s a lot of under-ratin’.”
Turnaround Unit Most Likely to Avoid Regression
- Lions offense second (15.8%)
This is a pretty neat category highlighting units that had huge turnarounds from 2021 to 2022. The Lions offense went from 29th to fifth in one year, and a good portion of the Football Outsiders staff believes that improvement is here to stay.
Other awards with Lions ties
- Kenny Golladay sixth in “Player who hurt his team most” (1.9%)
- Matt Patricia was second in Most Ineffective Coach or Coordinator (18.6%)
Overall, it’s neat to see the Lions get so much recognition, even if they aren’t pulling in the hardware quite yet.