Lions depth chart 2021: Detroit’s projected Week 1 starters heading into OTAs, coaching camp


The Detroit Lions are in an attention-grabbing place in 2021, ushering in a brand new period with new head coach Dan Campbell and quarterback Jared Goff. Detroit set itself up for the long run when the franchise acquired Goff, additionally receiving two first-round picks to tackle Goff’s contract whereas dealing away Matthew Stafford to the Los Angeles Rams

Detroit has constructed one of many prime younger offensive traces within the NFL, with first-round decide Penei Sewell the following franchise deal with — even when he is not beginning his profession defending Goff’s blind facet. The Lions even have top-of-the-line tight ends within the sport in T.J. Hockenson and an intriguing working again duo in D’Andre Swift and Jamaal Williams — a part of a core on offense the crew will look to rebuild beneath new offensive coordinator Anthony Lynn. 

The protection added Michael Brockers, a veteran trying to enhance the league’s worst unit (in factors and yards) final 12 months. Detroit additionally allowed essentially the most passing and speeding touchdowns in 2020, a troublesome job for brand new defensive coordinator Aaron Glenn — who’s going to take dangers with the secondary (much like his model in New Orleans). 

Whether or not the Lions are good or not in 2021, Campbell is altering the tradition by having a hungry crew that is going to combat for 60 minutes. An old-school kind of soccer model will re-emerge in Detroit, because the Lions have a couple of years to rebuild the franchise again right into a winner. 

Because the canine days of summer time get underway, let’s check out the Lions depth chart and the place all the brand new additions stack up as Campbell heads into his rookie marketing campaign. 

Observe: Asterisks denote rookies.


Give the Lions credit score for guaranteeing Goff is the No. 1 quarterback for this season. Detroit might have drafted a quarterback at No. 7 general to compete with Goff for the beginning job, however the offense advantages by having a two-time Professional Bowl quarterback main a  rebuild. If Goff pans out in 2021, the Lions need not hunt for a quarterback in 2022 and may construct round him with their future draft capital. 

Search for a robust working sport in Detroit as Lynn designated Williams the “A” again and Swift the “B” again. The “A” again is usually the larger again that may run between the tackles for all-three downs. It is a true competitors that might get much more intriguing if Todd Gurley joins the roster. The Lions may have hungry veterans in Tyrell Williams and Breshad Perriman trying to rebuild their careers, whereas St. Brown — a fourth-round decide — will compete for enjoying time. 

Detroit has one of many prime younger offensive traces within the league because the unit’s common age is 24 years outdated. 4 starters are 25 or beneath and Dekker is the oldest of the beginning unit at 27. The Lions even have depth at guard and deal with with Vaitai, who’s within the second 12 months of a five-year contract price as much as $50 million. Anticipate Vaitai to compete for a beginning job. 


The Lions are going to a 3-4 full-time in 2021, so Okwara and Flowers are set for snaps at outdoors linebacker as nicely. Brockers and Onwuzurike are pinned to line up on the within in sure packages. 

Detroit has some work to do in enhancing this unit, which goes to take greater than a one-year repair. Re-signing Okwara was massive for the Lions move rush, as he netted 61 pressures and 10 sacks in a breakout 12 months in 2020. The Lions additionally added Brockers to the combination, alongside along with his 28 pressures and 5 sacks from final season. The Lions allowed the fifth-most speeding yards within the league final 12 months, so that they added depth at defensive deal with in Alim McNeill and Levi Onwuzurike — as each will compete for beginning snaps with Penisini when the Lions rotate on the road. 

Collins leads a linebacker group that added Anzalone this offseason, who ought to compete for enjoying time as he began 9 video games for the New Orleans Saints at MIKE final 12 months. Tavai wa sone of the worst protection linebackers in soccer final 12 months, so the MIKE job is not settled but. Barnes performed the MIKE at Purdue in his senior season, however also can line up in a base protection as an additional edge rusher or play the “JOKER” place. 

Okudah was injured all through his rookie season, however he’ll get an opportunity to bounce again with Glenn — a former cornerback — as his new coach. Detroit gave up a league-worst 112.4 passer ranking to opposing quarterbacks in 2020, primarily as a result of the Lions did not have a lot of a move rush to again up the secondary. Enchancment up entrance will drastically alter this secondary for the higher. 



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