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Numbers that don’t lie: Detroit Lions have the worst offensive line coach in the NFL

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Detroit Lions

Heading into the 2018 NFL season, the hope for the Detroit Lions was that a bright spot would be their offensive line, which had been one of the worst in the league for some time. The first step the Lions made to make this happen was firing offensive line coach, Ron Prince.

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After Matt Patricia was hired as head coach of the Lions, he announced that he was bringing on Jeff Davidson to coach the offensive line. Davidson was available after he was fired by the Denver Broncos following the 2017 season.

The second thing the Lions did was they selected offensive lineman Frank Ragnow in the 1st Round of the 2018 NFL Draft. Through his first 13 NFL games, Ragnow has shown flashes that he can be a solid player while he has also had moments of weakness, which can be expected from a rookie offensive lineman.

Overall, the Lions offensive line has probably been better than it was a year ago, but they have a long way to go before they can be considered one of the top OL units in the NFL.

So, how does Davidson rank in the NFL compared to his fellow offensive line coaches?

Well, according to Justis Mosqueda from Optimum Scouting, Davidson has not only been bad when compared to his peers, but he has also been the worst!

As you can see below, Mosqueda takes Sack Value and Tackle for Loss Value into account to come up with a total score. Davidson’s scores in each of those areas are poor and it shows as he ranks No. 34 out of 34 (Denver and Minnesota each have two OL coaches on the list). In fact, if you take a look at the total scores, Davidson has a score of -130.8, which is considerably worse than the -103.8 posted by George Warhop of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So, what do these numbers mean? Here is how Mosqueda comes up with Sack Value and Tackle For Loss Value.

From Optimum Scouting:

In an attempt to do so, I tracked every current NFL offensive line coach’s resume dating back to 2004, when we entered a pass-friendly era. What I tracked was two things: Sack Value and TFL Value for individual teams in individual seasons.

Sack Value: (((Team sacks given up/Team total pass plays)-(NFL sacks given up/NFL total pass plays))*Team total pass plays)*-1

TFL Value: (((Team tackles for a loss given up/Team total run plays)-(NFL total tackles for a loss given up/NFL total run plays))*Team total run plays)*-1

I treated tackles at the line as tackles for a loss with the idea being that if a back did not get momentum to push even a yard, there was likely to be penetration caused by an offensive lineman. I also excluded kneel downs from the data sample.

If there are any easy counting stats that could be attributed (and easily accessed) to the performance of offensive linemen, it would be sacks and TFLs. The value system adjusts for what the NFL average in the stat was in a given year, giving it an era adjustment for rule changes, and attributes a plus-minus number that is tangible.

Examples: +5 Sack Value means a team prevented five sacks better than the NFL average. -3 TFL Value means a team allowed three TFLs worse than the NFL average.

From there, you match current offensive line coaches to teams which they had qualifying coaching roles for (offensive line coach, offensive coordinator and head coach) and BOOM you find the value of offensive lines while these coaches have been in roles to heavily-influence them. From there, we can try to answer questions like “How good is Dante Scarnecchia?”

It’s too bad that Matt Patricia was not presented with this information prior to hiring Davidson as the Lions offensive coordinator. Maybe it would be a good idea if he looks into it before the 2019 season begins.

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Detroit Lions ‘All-Local’ 2019 NFL Mock Draft

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This coming Thursday, the 2019 NFL Draft will officially begin.

Over the past few months, if you are anything like me, you have read literally hundreds upon hundreds of Detroit Lions’ mock drafts.

So, I figured it would be fun to think outside the box (but inside the state) to come up with what an ‘All-local’ Lions draft could look like.

Check it out.

Round 1 – Devin Bush Jr. (LB) Michigan or Rashan Gary (DL) Michigan

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Round 2 – Justin Layne (CB) Michigan State or David Long (CB) Michigan

Round 3 – Sean Bunting (CB) Central Michigan or Chase Winovich (DL) Michigan

Round 4 – Maxx Crosby (Edge) Eastern Michigan

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Round 5 – Khari Willis (S) Michigan State

Round 6 – Xavier Crawford (CB) Central Michigan

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Round 6 – Karan Higdon (RB) Michigan

Round 7 – Zach Gentry (TE) Michigan

Round 7 – LJ Scott (RB) Michigan State

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Now, I know there is a .0000001% chance of this actually happening, but those players should be available when the Lions are on the clock in each round.

If you want to read my ‘Detroit Lions’ Perfect 2019 NFL mock draft’ please click on the link below. It also includes a local player.

Detroit Lions’ Perfect 2019 NFL Mock Draft: Final Edition

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JUST IN: Detroit Lions drop 2019 schedule hype video

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The 2019 NFL Draft is less than a week away and on Friday the team dropped a 2019 schedule hype video.

Check it out!

Nation, what will the Lions record be in 2019?

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REPORT: Detroit Lions meet with standout cornerback

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The NFL Draft will be here before we know it and the Detroit Lions are putting their final touches on their preparations.

According to a report from Matt Miller, the Lions have met with former Central Michigan standout CB, Sean Bunting.

Bunting, who is expected to be drafted on Day 2, had 104 tackles and nine interceptions in 35 career games with the Chippewas.

BONUS CONTENT:

Detroit Lions’ Perfect 2019 NFL Mock Draft: Final Edition

Detroit Lions’ Perfect 2019 NFL Mock Draft: Final Edition

It has been a marathon but we are almost to the promised land which is the 2019 NFL Draft!

After hours and hours of research, all of the so-called “experts” will soon be unveiling their final mock draft of the season and none of them will end up being correct.

I, on the other hand, do not claim to be an expert. Instead, I am just a huge fan of the Detroit Lions who happens to believe to know what the Lions’ biggest needs are and which available prospects can fill those needs.

That being said, here is my final crack at what I believe the “perfect” Detroit Lions’ draft would look like.

*Remember, this is NOT what I think Lions’ GM Bob Quinn WILL do in the upcoming draft, it is what I think he SHOULD do.

Round 1, Pick 8

Ed Oliver (DL) Houston

I absolutely LOVE Ed Oliver if he is available when the Detroit Lions are on the clock with the No. 8 pick in the first round of the draft. Whether or not he will be available is the big question.

Oliver is an absolute beast and he could come in and make an immediate impact for a Lions defense that should be greatly improved in 2019.

From Dane Brugler (The Athletic):

STRENGTHS: Fluid body control to wriggle off blocks…excellent foot quickness and change of direction skills…shot out of a cannon with his first step…forces holding penalties due to his gap quickness…creates knockback with his speed-to-power skills…ball awareness to track through blocks…uses natural leverage to stay underneath the pads of blockers…better than expected play strength as a run defender…highly aggressive motor and effort never wanes, chasing down plays near the sidelines…dominated from the moment he stepped onto campus and leaves as a three-time All-American, collecting 54.0 tackles for loss over 33 career starts.

WEAKNESSES: Lacks desired frame and length…needs to continue and develop his body and stay in the 280-285 pound range (weighed 274 for most of his final season at Houston)…relied more on motor than brute power to overwhelm blockers in college…not a bull rusher…undeveloped approach with his hands…below- average counter measures once locked up…faced inferior competition in the AAC…several immature moments in college, including an on-field altercation with head coach Major Applewhite regarding a coat issue on the sideline — Oliver has a “young attitude” and has “growing up to do,” according to an NFL scout…missed five games as a junior with a right knee bruise (November 2018) and was limited at the combine with a strained hamstring (February 2019).

SUMMARY: A three-year starter at Houston, Oliver was one of college football’s most disruptive players over the last three years, spending most of his time at nose tackle for the Cougars. With his football flexibility and natural biomechanics, he has rare athletic ability for the position with the backfield vision to recognize play designs and disrupt from different angles. Oliver still requires time to develop his body, mind and technique at the next level. He will struggle with long-armed blockers who get to his frame and control his chest, but his energy and motor are both elite. Overall, Oliver won’t be a natural fit for every NFL scheme, but he is an ideal one-gap penetrator due to his athleticism, instincts and relentless nature, projecting best when he is lined up closest to the football.

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