Detroit Lions Offseason Needs: Defense headlines long list of needs

Head coach Dan Campbell of the Detroit Lions (Photo by Nic Antaya/Getty Images)
Head coach Dan Campbell of the Detroit Lions (Photo by Nic Antaya/Getty Images) /
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Detroit Lions, Trey Flowers
Trey Flowers #90 of the Detroit Lions (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images) /

Detroit Lions Offseason Needs: Find Ways To Create Pressure

As a team during the 2021 season the Detroit Lions finished 30th out of 32 NFL teams in sacks. The Lions got to the quarterback just 30 times. Only the Philadelphia Eagles (29) and Atlanta Falcons (18) had fewer sacks during the season.

The Lions were also one of the worst teams in the league when it came to QB pressures per drop back, meaning the percentage of times an opposing quarterback was either hurried, knocked down or sacked during a drop back. Detroit’s pressure percentage as a defense was 20.5% of drop backs, which ranked 29th in the league, ahead of just the New York Giants, Indianapolis Colts and Falcons.

If a quarterback has time in the pocket to get comfortable and go through each of his reads, it’s going to be very difficult for a defense to make a stop. This offseason the Lions have to make additions to improve this statistic.

The good news is that they are in a great position in the 2022 NFL Draft to do just that. With the second overall selection, a top edge rusher is guaranteed to be on the board. That one addition alone can help transform this aspect of the Detroit defense, which should provide a positive ripple through the rest of the defensive unit.