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Friday open thread: What is the ceiling for the Lions defense in 2023?

With all of the changes made on that side of the ball, what do you think the ceiling is for the Lions defense in 2023?

Philadelphia Eagles v Detroit Lions Photo by Nic Antaya/Getty Images

Despite not being all that long ago, the beginning of the 2022 season feels like a distant memory. For the Detroit Lions and their young defense, it might feel like a decade ago. Back then, defensive coordinator Aaron Glenn’s unit was having major issues, seemingly every week. They weren’t forcing turnovers, they couldn't get off the field, couldn’t stop the run—things were just plain ugly on that side of the ball.

Then, as they tend to do over the course of a 17-game season, things changed. Many of the young players on Detroit’s defense started to figure things out, and the tide began to turn. Rookies like Aidan Hutchinson, Kerby Joseph, and Malcolm Rodriguez started making big play after big play. After a shakeup to the coaching staff, the secondary began to trust each other and as a result—started to click.

Now the unit looks much different than it did when last season ended. General manager Brad Holmes added the likes of defensive backs Cameron Sutton, Emmanuel Moseley, and C.J. Gardner-Johnson to the now re-tooled secondary. In the 2023 NFL Draft, he selected University of Iowa linebacker Jack Campbell with the 18th overall pick.

Today’s Question of the Day is:

What is the ceiling for the Lions’ defense in 2023?

My answer: I believe if things click early for this defense, the ceiling could be a top-10 unit in all of football. It will take some rapid development, especially from the front-seven, but the secondary has bonafide playmakers running around. If the defensive line can consistently stop the run and apply pressure to opposing quarterbacks—the secondary should be able to take advantage.

What about you? What do you think the ceiling is for the Lions’ defense in 2023? Let us know in the comments by scrolling down to the bottom of the page.


What is the ceiling of the Lions’ defense in 2023?

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