Football season is closing in, and on July 29th, the Detroit Lions will start Training Camp for the 2023 season. We have had a series covering the different position groups heading into camp, we have done the Quarterbacks, Running Backs, Wide Receivers, and Tight Ends, and today we will go over the Offensive Lineman.
Detroit Lions Training Camp Roster Preview: Offensive Line
Decker was drafted 16th overall in the 2016 NFL draft by Detroit. Decker has played in 97 career games; last season, he played in all 17 games for the Lions and played in every single offensive snap, which is the third time in his career he has done that.
The Detroit Lions drafted Sewell with the seventh overall pick in 2021 and was the first pick of the Brad Holmes/Dan Campbell era. Sewell played in every game for Detroit last season, and like Decker was in for every offensive snap, he also caught a pass last season for nine yards which secured a win for the Lions over the Minnesota Vikings.
Ragnow was drafted by Detroit 20th overall in the 2018 draft and is entering his sixth season as the Center for the Lions. Last season he played in 16 games for the Lions and was only flagged three times all season, with those coming on two holding calls and one false start. Ragnow also made his second career pro bowl last season.
Jackson was drafted by the Lions 75th overall in the 2020 NFL draft. Jackson is entering his fourth season with the Detroit Lions, and last season, he played in 13 games and was flagged only three times, with two of those being a holding penalty, and the third flag was an offsetting penalty. Jackson was a pro bowler in 2021 when he played in all 16 games for the Lions that season.
After playing four seasons with the Philadelphia Eagles, Vaitai signed with the Lions in 2020. He has played in 80 games, with 25 coming with Detroit. Last season he played in 15 games for the Lions. Vaitai also won a Super Bowl with the Eagles back in 2017, and he played in 16 games for the Eagles that season, with ten being starts; he also played every offensive snap for Philadelphia in that Super Bowl.
Ifedi was drafted 31st overall in the 2016 NFL draft and is entering his eighth season. Ifedi has played on three other teams, with the Detroit Lions now being his fourth team; he previously played for the Seattle Seahawks, who drafted him in 2016, the Chicago Bears, and the Atlanta Falcons. The Lions signed him on May 23rd after the Falcons released him on May 16th.
Glasgow was drafted by the Lions 95th overall in the 2016 NFL draft and spent his four seasons in Detroit before signing with the Denver Broncos in 2020 for four years but was ultimately released on March 10th, and six days later, the Lions signed him back. Glasgow has played in 99 career games, with 62 coming in a Lions uniform.
Nelson is entering his fourth season in the league and has played 40 games with the Lions. He originally played his first season on the defensive side of the ball but has now transitioned to the offensive side. Last season Nelson played in 11 games, playing in nine percent of the offensive snaps and 20% of the special team’s snaps.
The Lions drafted Stenberg with the 121st overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft. Last season he played in 16 games with only four starts for Detroit. The 16 games last season was the most he’s played in one season in his career; in 2021, he played seven games before landing on Injured Reserve.
Pierschbacher was signed to the Lions' practice squad last season after he was waived by the New York Jets. Pierschbacher was elevated to the active roster on December 3rd last season and would play in three games, with all of his snaps coming on the Special Teams side of things for the Lions.
The Detroit Lions drafted Sorsdal with the 152nd overall pick in the 2023 NFL Draft. Sorsdal played his college football at William & Mary University and was there for five seasons. Sorsdal played in 45 career games. He was an All-CAA First Team. He helped William & Mary rush for 265.8 yards a game and the fewest sacks allowed per game with 0.77.
Paulo is entering his fourth season; he has never played a snap in the NFL as he has spent most of his career on the practice squad, having been a part of the New Orleans Saints, Denver Broncos, and the Lions.
After playing his college football at Baylor, the Detroit Lions signed Galvin as an Undrafted Free Agent. Galvin was a fifth-year start at Baylor and was named the Big 12 Offensive Lineman of the Year for 2021.
Awosika was signed by the Lions on September 14th last season from the Eagles practice squad. Awosika would go on to play in ten games for the Lions playing in 23% of the snaps for the Detroit offense and 19% of the Special Teams snaps.
Cecil is a rookie and was signed by the Lions as an Undrafted Free Agent from the University of South Florida. Cecil played in eight games for USF last season, and in his career, he played in 53 games, with 50 being starts. He ranks second all-time in both those categories for the Bulls.
Eze signed with the Lions as an Undrafted Free Agent after the 2022 NFL Draft from Texas Christian University. Eze was on the Lions practice squad last season but was placed on the practice squad injured reserve on December 31st.
Out of the University of Central Florida, the Lions signed Swoboda as an Undrafted Free Agent. Swoboda started his college career at Virginia before transferring to UCF, and he played 11 games for UCF in 2022.
Pitcher was originally signed by the Los Angeles Rams back in 2022 and was on the Rams practice squad but on March 13th, the Rams waived him, and the Lions signed him on May 22nd.
Bottom Line: The Detroit Lions Offensive Line, the key to success in 2023
The Detroit Lions have one of the best offensive lines in the National Football League, and that group will be key for the Lions in 2023. This is one of the positions where the Lions have so much depth; even Taylor Decker mentioned they could have three offensive lines. Analysts have predicted the Lions to make the playoffs this season. One of those reasons will be the offensive line, as they will be key to allowing David Montgomery and Jahmyr Gibbs time to find holes and make big plays, as well as keeping Jared Goff upright and giving him time to make a play to drive the Lions down the field.