The best way to build a foundation in the NFL is through developing young talent, and for the third consecutive season, the Lions are getting extensive contribution for the team’s rookie class. Look no further than the Lions’ most-recent game, a 20-10 division win over the Chicago Bears. In the contest, the Lions’ top seven draft picks had major roles, with an undrafted rookie getting significant work in the backfield. “I’m appreciative of those guys, how they work,” Lions coach Jim Caldwell said. “I’m proud of them, the way they play, the way they fight. They’ve got the right kind of attitude.” First-round pick, linebacker Jarrad Davis, had one of his best games against Chicago. Showcasing quickly improving pursuit angles, he recorded six tackles in the victory. Cornerback Teez Tabor and tight end Michael Roberts both had season-high workloads, while wide receiver Kenny Golladay was on the field for at least 50 snaps the second consecutive week. Linebacker Jalen Reeves-Maybin, a fourth-round pick out of Tennessee, and sixth-round defensive tackle Jeremiah Ledbetter continue to have steady rotational roles on defense. And Jamal Agnew, making his return to action after missing three weeks with a knee injury, picked up right where he left off, as one of the league’s most electric punt returners. Then there’s Tion Green, who was a healthy scratch the first 11 games, but has quickly carved out a role as Detroit’s best power-running option. In his first three appearances, he’s churned out 101 yards on 26 carries.
Lions' rookie crop paying early dividends
Detroit News | Dec 19