2015 DRAFT GUIDE
Lions' O line paving the way for team's success

    2013-10-03 02:32

(Eds: With AP Photos.)
By LARRY LAGE
AP Sports Writer

ALLEN PARK, Mich. (AP) - The Detroit Lions have had one of the NFL's best offenses this season, ranking among the league leaders in scoring and yards.

A new-look offensive line has a lot to do with that.

With three new starters, the Lions' revamped line is giving Matthew Stafford more time to throw and Reggie Bush more room to run. Entering the season, the unit was regarded as a weakness by people outside of the franchise. Through four games, it has been an asset.

``For four weeks, I guess we proved everybody wrong,'' guard Rob Sims said Wednesday. ``We still got a long way to go. We knew what we had. We know what it looked like on paper. I understand why everybody felt the way that they felt because we weren't big-name guys.''

The Lions lost last year's left tackle, Jeff Backus, to retirement. Detroit didn't re-sign right tackle Gosder Cherilus, who now starts for the Indianapolis Colts, and released right guard Stephen Peterman, who was cut by the New York Jets in August.

Detroit drafted Riley Reiff in the first round last year and defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh was confident the team would have a quality player at the key position to protect Stafford's blind side.

``Every single day of last year, nonstop going against Riley Reiff, you knew he was ready to step in at left tackle,'' Suh said.

While Reiff had his job locked up well before Week 1, the Lions gave several players a shot to start at right guard and right tackle. Rookie Larry Warford, a third-round pick from Kentucky, won the job at right guard.

``Larry is going to have some ups and downs and growing pains that all players are going to have, being that young,'' Sims said. ``But he's doing a great job of handling the ups and lows. He's pretty even-keeled.''

Jason Fox beat out Corey Hilliard to start at right tackle for the opener. Fox, though, had a groin injury in his first career start against the Minnesota Vikings and Hilliard replaced him.

``We even cut some guys that I think could have contributed,'' Detroit coach Jim Schwartz said. ``I really like where those guys are. They do have a good personality. They protected well. They have also opened up some good holes in the running game. Rightfully so, a lot is made of Reggie and the yards he has gotten in the big plays. There are a lot of times he's in to the secondary without getting touched. That's credit to the offensive line.''

Center Dominic Raiola, though, doesn't want anyone patting him or his linemates on their backs yet.

``We still believe we're a work in progress and we're going to stick to that,'' said Raiola, who has played for Detroit since ex-general manager Matt Millen drafted him in 2001. ``Our work is never done. We have big-picture goals and goals within our room that we keep in our room. There's no satisfaction. The leaders in that room will never let it get to that.''

NOTES: WR Kevin Olgetree signed a one-year contract with the Lions, a person familiar with the deal told The Associated Press. The person spoke Wednesday on condition of anonymity because the move had not been announced. ... The Lions kept S Louis Delmas (knee), CB Chris Houston (hamstring), WR Calvin Johnson (knee) and S Glover Quin (ankle) out of Wednesday's practice. ... DE Ezekiel Ansah (abdomen) and Sims (shoulder) were limited in practice while WR Patrick Edwards (right ankle), Fox (groin) and CB Rashean Mathis (head) were able to participate in all of the practice.

---

Online:

AP NFL site: http://pro32.ap.org

---

Follow Larry Lage on Twitter: http://twitter.com/larrylage

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

Tyler EifertJul 30 03:23p

Cincinnati Bengals TE Tyler Eifert said he is 100% healthy for the first time since the beginning of last offseason.

LeGarrette BlountJul 30 01:22p

New England Patriots RB LeGarrette Blount was placed on the Non-Football Injury list because he was not able to complete the conditioning test at the start of training camp. [ More ]

Kelvin BenjaminJul 30 01:02p

Carolina Panthers WR Kelvin Benjamin (hamstring) said his hamstrings are fine and that he is 100% healthy entering training camp.

Terrance WestJul 30 12:52p

Cleveland Browns RB Terrance West worked with the first-team offense during team drills Thursday, July 30. Head coach Mike Pettine said several running backs will see time with the starters during training camp.

Trent RichardsonJul 30 10:22a

Oakland Raiders RB Trent Richardson is rumored to being unimpressive with his new team.

Tom BradyJul 30 10:12a

Updating an ongoing story, New England Patriots QB Tom Brady's lawsuit was transferred to Manhattan, N.Y., by a Minnesota judge Friday, July 30.

Tom BradyJul 30 09:52a

New England Patriots QB Tom Brady has filed a lawsuit against the NFL asking a Minnesota federal court for penalties against Brady to be vacated. The suit alleges that [ More ]

Jake LongJul 30 09:42a

Free-agent OT Jake Long (Rams) left his visit with the New York Giants Wednesday, July 29, without a deal. It was his second visit with the team without a [ More ]

Joseph RandleJul 29 08:43p

Dallas Cowboys RB Joseph Randle received strong praise from team owner and general manager Jerry Jones Wednesday July 29. 'We have a player (in Randle) that has the potential [ More ]

Joique BellJul 29 07:23p

Detroit Lions RB Joique Bell (undisclosed) was placed on the physically unable to perform list Wednesday, July 29, as he recovers from offseason surgery. It is unclear what the [ More ]

James WrightJul 29 06:43p

Free-agent WR James Wright (Bengals) was placed on Reserve/Injured Wednesday, July 29.

Jordan ReedJul 29 05:43p

Washington Redskins TE Jordan Reed (knee) has been cleared for full participation in training camp, according to head coach Jay Gruden.

Chase CoffmanJul 29 04:53p

Free-agent TE Chase Coffman (Titans) re-signed with the Tennessee Titans Wednesday, July 29, according to a source.

Jason Pierre-PaulJul 29 04:33p

New York Giants DE Jason Pierre-Paul (finger) can be placed on the Non-Football Injury list if/when he signs his franchise tender. Owner John Mara said the team would like [ More ]

Jason Pierre-PaulJul 29 04:23p

New York Giants DE Jason Pierre-Paul (finger) is receiving his own medical treatment and rehabilitation at his home. There is currently no timetable for his return. Pierre-Paul, however, could [ More ]

Roddy WhiteJul 29 03:43p

Atlanta Falcons WR Roddy White (knee) had his left knee drained before minicamp, and he could have it drained again before the season ends. White isn't concerned about it, [ More ]

Ryan KerriganJul 29 01:43p

Washington Redskins LB Ryan Kerrigan signed a five-year contract extension Wednesday, July 29, worth $11.5 million per season, according to a source. The deal includes a $16 million signing bonus.

Cyrus GrayJul 29 01:13p

Kansas City Chiefs RB Cyrus Gray was released Wednesday, July 29.

Carlos HydeJul 29 11:13a

San Francisco 49ers RB Carlos Hyde is not believed to be injured and shouldn't be on the non-football injury list for long. Hyde suffered a calf injury during spring [ More ]

Tom BradyJul 29 09:23a

Updating previous reports, New England Patriots QB Tom Brady posted on Facebook that he replaced his broken phone with a new one after his attorneys told the NFL 'my [ More ]

Tom BradyJul 29 01:53a

Updating a previous report, New England Patriots QB Tom Brady could have had his suspended reduced based on a series of conditions. According to a source with knowledge of [ More ]

Eric BerryJul 29 01:43a

Kansas City Chiefs SS Eric Berry (illness) has been cleared to take the practice field with the team Wednesday, July 29. He was diagnosed with Hodgkin's Lymphoma in December [ More ]

Geno SmithJul 28 08:03p

New York Jets QB Geno Smith could be benched if he struggles early in the season, according to head coach Todd Bowles Tuesday, July 28. 'If you feel that [ More ]

Ryan WilliamsJul 28 05:53p

Dallas Cowboys RB Ryan Williams (knee) was placed on Reserve/Injured Tuesday, July 28.

Brodrick BunkleyJul 28 05:43p

New Orleans Saints DT Brodrick Bunkley (undisclosed) was released with a failed physical designation Tuesday, July 28.

James WrightJul 28 05:33p

Cincinnati Bengals WR James Wright (knee) was waived with an injured designation Tuesday, July 28.

Darrin ReavesJul 28 05:33p

Carolina Panthers RB Darrin Reaves was waived Tuesday, July 28.

Tom BradyJul 28 05:13p

New England Patriots QB Tom Brady is facing a four-game suspension, but the Patriots have done fairly well without him. In games Brady has missed since he became a [ More ]

Tom BradyJul 28 04:53p

New England Patriots QB Tom Brady has given permission to the NFL Players Association to appeal his case in federal court, according to a source. NFL commissioner Roger Goodell [ More ]

Lamar MillerJul 28 03:43p

Miami Dolphins RB Lamar Miller may see an increase in carries in 2015, according to head coach Joe Philbin. 'If he's cranking and he got it 24 times a [ More ]

Le'Veon BellJul 28 03:03p

Pittsburgh Steelers RB Le'Veon Bell's original three-game suspension has been reduced to a two-game suspension Tuesday, July 28.

Tom BradyJul 28 02:53p

New England Patriots QB Tom Brady's four-game suspension has been upheld by NFL commissioner Roger Goodell Tuesday, July 28.

RSS Feeds

NFL News:
 
Player Notes:
 
Forum Posts:
 

© 2015 RealTime Fantasy Sports, Inc.
Email Us  ·  Call Us 636.447.1170  ·  Lost Password
Advertising represented by USA Today Sports Media Group