Predicting the Detroit Lions starting defense for Week 17 matchup vs. Cowboys

Predicting the Detroit Lions starting defense for Week 17 matchup vs. Cowboys. Photo Credit - Junfu Han - USA TODAY

Predicting the Detroit Lions starting defense for Week 17 matchup vs. Cowboys

As the Detroit Lions gear up for their Saturday night showdown against the Dallas Cowboys, their defense stands at the forefront of a historic opportunity. Having clinched their division for the first time since 1993, the Lions now face a formidable Cowboys team, presenting a chance to solidify their status as a powerhouse in the NFC.

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Who will be on the Detroit Lions Starting Defense?

  • EDGE: Aidan Hutchinson
  • EDGE: John Cominsky
  • DT: Isaiah Buggs
  • DT: Benito Jones
  • LB: Alex Anzalone
  • LB: Jack Campbell
  • CB: Cam Sutton
  • CB: Jerry Jacobs
  • NB: Brian Branch
  • S: Ifeatu Melifonwu
  • S: Kerby Joseph

What's New?

With Jerry Jacobs stepping in for Kindle Vildor, the Lions' secondary gains an edge. The return of Derrick Barnes was anticipated, but I think Jack Campbell retains his starting role, underscoring the team's depth and adaptability.

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Defensive Spotlight: Hutchinson, Jacobs, and Campbell

The spotlight shines bright on EDGE Aidan Hutchinson, whose potential for a multi-sack game against the Cowboys' potent offense could be a game-changer. Jerry Jacobs, stepping back in as a starter, will need to demonstrate his coverage skills against a diverse Cowboys receiving corps. Meanwhile, Jack Campbell's presence in the linebacker position adds a layer of resilience and versatility to the defense.

TL;DR (too long didn't read)

  1. Hutchinson's Impact Plays: Aidan Hutchinson, the Detroit Lions' standout EDGE, holds the potential to significantly disrupt the Cowboys' offensive rhythm. His ability to apply pressure on the quarterback and potentially achieve multiple sacks could be pivotal in tilting the game in the Lions' favor.
  2. Secondary's Challenge: With Jerry Jacobs stepping in, the Lions' secondary faces a substantial test against the Cowboys' diverse and dynamic receiving corps.
  3. Linebacker Corps Stability: Jack Campbell’s role as a starting linebacker, despite Derrick Barnes's return, highlights the depth and versatility of the Lions' linebacker corps. Campbell’s and Alex Anzalone’s performances in the middle of the defense will be essential in both run defense and pass coverage.
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The Bottom Line – A Test of Defensive Mettle

As the Detroit Lions face the Dallas Cowboys, the game is more than just a matchup in the regular season; it's a chance for the Lions to cement their resurgence in the league. The defense, particularly players like Hutchinson, Jacobs, and Campbell, must replicate their strong form to contain the Cowboys' dynamic offense.

This game serves as a litmus test for the Lions' defensive unit, challenging them to rise to the occasion and demonstrate their capacity as a dominant force. A triumph here is not just a victory on the field but a statement of the team's potential and tenacity in the face of high-caliber opponents.