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4 Detroit Lions game ball candidates vs. Jacksonville Jaguars

Which Lions player deserves the Game Ball for Saturday’s preseason loss vs. the Jaguars?

NFL: Preseason-Jacksonville Jaguars at Detroit Lions David Reginek-USA TODAY Sports

Saturday was not very fun viewing for Lions fans, as the Detroit Lions looked sloppy and scattered for much of the day against the Jacksonville Jaguars. It ended as a 25-7 thrashing, with some positives on the defense and very little to love on offense. Here are your game ball candidates for the day:

Dave Fipp, Special Teams Coordinator

Gotta give Dave Fipp some love. It’s one thing to see a single player making magic happen on kick returns or punt returns. It’s another thing for everyone who takes a rep to rip off a big one. The common denominator in that case is the man scheming up the returns, Dave Fipp.

Fipp is clearly in midseason form, and it’s not just the return units. Punt coverage has been stellar so far, and the Lions are finding many diamonds in the rough with punt gunners, like Starling Thomas, who’s finding a helping hand in his case to make the team.

John Cominsky, EDGE

In last week’s game ball, I didn’t let Cominsky be eligible for voting because he was a man amongst boys. Saturday, he was once again a man amongst boys, and I will not take that away from him a second time. He clocked in his normal productive hours at the line of scrimmage, and sprinkled in some fun with a pass deflection on fourth-and-3 for the Jaguars.

It says more about the depth of this Detroit Lions roster that Cominsky (and guys like Tracy Walker and James Houston, I should add) are getting high volume reps with the second team. As Devin Gardner so eloquently put it on the broadcast, “all defensive ends know that this is the standard on this roster.” Cominsky clearly has not lost any juice from his 2022 season that landed him a two-year extension, and he looks like a man ready to be out there with the first-team defense.

Jack Campbell, LB

It’s such a change of pace for linebackers to be a pleasant experience for Lions fans. It seems like until late last year the Lions were doing damage control for the linebacker play that started with the QuinnTricia era. Now, linebackers coach Kelvin Sheppard and the Lions’ defensive staff are getting every ounce of talent out of their linebackers, with the first-round pick being no exception.

Campbell didn’t have any super flashy plays Saturday, but he was a consistent force, especially in run defense. Campbell doesn’t look lost by any means, and he’s extremely steady in the face of play action by the offense. He exhibits tremendous gap discipline, even when shedding pulling guards, and finishes every play with solid fundamentals. It’s not always going to make the highlights, but Campbell is consistently bringing a very high level of play to the table, and did so for over two full quarters Saturday.

James Houston IV, LB

That’s right, it’s no longer James Houston, EDGE. While that’s what we generally know him as from his breakout pass rushing skills last season, Houston is showing us the extensive work for him to diversify his portfolio. Saturday showed us James Houston in pass rush, run defense, heck, even in coverage.

Houston wasn’t perfect, but every week he’s improving noticeably across the board. Dominating against second-team is a strong improvement from where Houston started training camp and bodes well for an expanded role in the regular season.

Who deserves this week’s game ball? Vote below and choose your winner:


Who gets the Lions’ game ball against the Jaguars?

This poll is closed

  • 16%
    Dave Fipp
    (295 votes)
  • 48%
    John Cominsky
    (875 votes)
  • 16%
    James Houston IV
    (297 votes)
  • 18%
    Jack Campbell
    (340 votes)
1807 votes total Vote Now

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