Key Reason Why the Lions Are a Playoff Team in 2011
Drafting the likes of Nick Fairley and Ndamukong Suh, the past two Lombardi Trophy winners, is huge for the Lions.
Grant Winstrom, Julius Peppers, Warren Sapp, Orlando Pace, Lamar Woodley, and Terrell Suggs all won the award, so this definitely sets their defensive front up for success for years to come.
Despite having one of the worst secondary units in all of football, the Lions still surprisingly ranked sixth in the NFL in sacks. Going into the 2011 season, the secondary unit has to get better, being one of the worst in the NFL.
As a defensive unit, the Lions racked up 44 sacks with one of the most dominant defensive fronts in all of football. Going into the 2011 season, they are looking to add to that success.
With the addition of Nick Fairley, the best pass rushing defensive tackle in the draft, they will be looking to get after quarterbacks more than last year. This will help keep double teams off of Suh.
With guys like Suh, Fairley and Williams at defensive tackle, I expect the Lions trio to rack up 25 sacks between the three of them. Suh and Fairley will both be top 5 pass rushing defensive tackles in 2011.
With arguably the best defensive tackle unit in football, the Lions add even more to this dynamic group by coupling them with the likes of Kyle Vanden Bosch, Cliff Avril and Lawrence Jackson.
It has also been stated that the Lions are looking for another quality starting caliber defensive end to add depth to their unit. This would be big if they could do this along with strengthening other areas of concern.
With the additions of Justin Durant, Eric Wright and Stephen Tulloch, the Lions have added to the back end to help improve coverage and run support. Re-signing Chris Houston was a big move for Detroit also.
By helping out on the other levels to allow time for more coverage sacks, with the re-signings and signings, they have done more than enough to contend in their division and the playoffs.
The rest of the NFL better hope that the Lions do not get Osi Umenyiora; he would definitely benefit from having such a talented defensive tackle crop around him.
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