Inside the Article:
The Detroit Lions will host a pair of joint practices this week against the New York Giants, and it will be a golden opportunity for both teams to see their players in action against fresh competition. With that being said, another benefit of joint practices is for general managers and coaches to scout players on the opposing roster. Specifically, players who are bubble players on one team could end up being a fit on another. In a recent article, Dan Duggan and Colton Pouncey of The Athletic looked at bubble players on the Giants and Lions that could potentially benefit each other.
3 Detroit Lions players the New York Giants could poach
Though Duggan and Pouncey don't believe the Giants have any bubble players who would benefit the Lions, they did list three Lions bubble players who could help out the Giants, along with what the guys from The Athletic have to say about each one.
A 2020 third-round pick out of Notre Dame, the younger Okwara has experience playing defensive end and outside linebacker. He has some upside as a pass rusher but simply hasn’t put it all together. Entering the final year of his rookie deal, there might not be a future between the two sides.
Pittman played a total of 54 defensive snaps for the Lions in 2022, but he was second on the team in special teams snaps with 355. For a Giants team looking for depth, Pittman could be a reserve linebacker and a quality special teams contributor.
Chase Lucas, a 2022 seventh-round pick who impressed the staff and made the 53-man roster a year ago, could be a tough cut. He primarily played nickel and safety and was a special teams contributor, but new additions in the secondary serve as obstacles this time around. Given his limited NFL experience, he might not be a hot commodity if the Lions waive him.
- The joint practices between the Detroit Lions and the New York Giants will serve as a platform for coaches and general managers to scout bubble players on the opposing teams, who might be potential fits for their roster.
- Dan Duggan and Colton Pouncey from The Athletic did not identify any Giants bubble players beneficial for the Lions. However, they found three Lions players who might prove useful to the Giants – Julian Okwara, Anthony Pittman, and Chase Lucas.
- Okwara has experience as a defensive end and outside linebacker but hasn't realized his full potential. Pittman could be a valuable reserve linebacker and special teams contributor. Lucas, who previously impressed the Lions staff, primarily played nickel and safety, and was a special teams contributor, but might face obstacles with new additions in the secondary.
Bottom Line: Leave No Stone Unturned
The impending joint practice sessions between the Detroit Lions and the New York Giants promise more than just a chance to watch players in action against new competition. It provides an important opportunity for teams to identify potential talent from the opposing team's bubble players. Specifically, for the Giants, three Lions players – Julian Okwara, Anthony Pittman, and Chase Lucas – identified by The Athletic's Dan Duggan and Colton Pouncey, could bring additional value to their roster. Their roles in defensive end, linebacker, and special teams respectively, could benefit the Giants if these players don't fit into the Lions' future plans. This exemplifies the significance of such practices in shaping the team rosters, beyond player performance assessment and strategy building.