6 Reasons Why the Lions' Backfield Will Be a Top-10 Unit in 2012

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6 Reasons Why the Lions' Backfield Will Be a Top-10 Unit in 2012
Leon Halip/Getty Images

The Detroit Lions fielded the fifth-best overall offense in the NFL in terms of yardage in 2011.

The Lions rushing game was ranked 29th out of 32.

I won't bother posing the question of how that's possible. I'll just point out that Calvin Johnson had more receiving yards in 2011 than the Lions had rushing yards.

But, although the Lions are, and will continue to be, a "pass-first" offense, they absolutely cannot ignore the running game.

While I have questions about the ability of the offensive line to create interior gaps, there's little question that the Lions have invested in talent in the backfield.

Perhaps this reflects the Lions' ability (and willingness) to use their running backs as receiving targets, or perhaps they're just not putting as much emphasis on a relatively unimportant position.

Either way, there are several reasons to be optimistic about the success of the Lions' backfield, despite any offensive line concerns.

The first one will... not surprise you.

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