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Discussion: What will you be watching for in Lions, Giants joint practices?

The New York Giants will be the first team to arrive in Allen Park next week for joint practices. What will you be looking for in the first test for the 2023 Detroit Lions?

Chicago Bears v Detroit Lions Photo by Nic Antaya/Getty Images

Over the last several years, the NFL’s preseason has seen quite a bit of change. Most teams now only play three exhibition games prior to the regular season, and the prevalence of joint practices have forced the actual games between clubs to take even more of a backseat than in years past.

For the Detroit Lions, their first test of the season will come next week, when the New York Giants arrive in Metro Detroit. They will hold two joint practices against the Giants—one on Tuesday, August 8 (exclusive to Lions Loyal members), and another on Wednesday, August 9, before they wrap the week of competition up with their first preseason tilt of the year on Friday, August 11 at Ford Field.

Coaches around the league like the idea of getting players live reps via joint practices over the preseason for a variety of reasons. First off, they have much more control over the flow of the action in a practice setting. They can tee up specific situations, reset a play if they want, and blow a play dead if they are trying to keep players off the ground.

From the players’ perspective, this will be the first chance they get to go against someone in a different uniform. I know iron sharpens iron and all of that, but I’d bet almost anything guys like right tackle Penei Sewell and defensive end Aidan Hutchinson are champing at the bit to get after someone other than their teammates.

Today’s Question of the Day is:

What will you be watching for when the Giants are in town for joint practices?

My answer: I really want to see who emerges as quarterback Jared Goff’s second favorite target behind third-year receiver Amon-Ra St. Brown.

I didn’t really know if it was possible, but St. Brown has elevated his game to new heights so far in 2023 and has essentially become unguardable in the process. He and Goff are in near-perfect harmony, and we are still only in the first week of August—a scary prospect for opposing defenses.

However, beyond the Sun God, someone needs to step up and become a reliable second option for Goff.

Will it be second-year receiver Jameson Williams? It’s his first training camp of his career, and his play has been up-and-down thus far, but plays like his 55-yard bomb where he dusted starting cornerback Cameron Sutton make you believe all over again.

Or could one of the more veteran receivers like Marvin Jones Jr, Josh Reynolds, or Kalif Raymond step up early in the year? Maybe rookie tight end Sam LaPorta quickly gets in sync with Goff, and becomes an outlet for him in between the hashes?

What about you? What will you be watching for when the Giants are in town for joint practices? Let us know in the comments by scrolling down to the bottom of the page.

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