The bad: Detroit was dealt a blow when Pro Bowl right guard battled injury all season and ended up playing in just 282 snaps due to an assortment of injuries, the worst being a neck injury that ended his season prematurely.
Lang and the Lions will have to decide the future of the position this offseason. He seemed to indicate after the season that he didn’t want to call it a career on the sour note that was the 2018 season for him. Detroit will have to determine if the veteran Lang fits into their 2019 plans.
In games at Minnesota (10 sacks allowed) and at Chicago (six) this season Detroit’s O-line was completely overwhelmed by the Vikings and Bears defensive front seven’s. The 10 sacks by the Vikings is a new franchise record for them.
Key stat(s): The Lions ranked in the top 10 in the NFL this season in quarterback hurries allowed with 130. New England had the fewest (105) and Minnesota the most (188). Detroit’s 41 sacks allowed ranked 17th.
Free agents: All five starters for the Lions are under contract for 2019. Whether or not all five – Taylor Decker, Ragnow, Graham Glasgow, Lang, and Rick Wagner – are in Detroit’s plans for next season is a question we’ll learn the answer to in the coming months.
Reserve tackle Andrew Donnal, who was inactive most of the season as Detroit’s fourth tackle, is the only free agent this offseason among Detroit’s offensive line.
Draft: Alabama’s Jonah Williams, Oklahoma’s Cody Ford and Ole Miss’ Greg Little are considered first-round locks at the tackle position. Florida’s Jawaan Taylor will also be in the mix late in the first round or early second round.
The Lions appear right now to be pretty set at tackle with Decker, Wagner and last year’s fifth-round pick, Tyrell Crosby, a player they really like.
There aren’t any interior offensive lineman the quality of a Quenton Nelson, who was drafted in the top 10 by Indianapolis last year, in this year’s crop of prospects. There might not be a first rounder in the bunch because this draft is so heavily weighed on the defensive side of the ball with all the top talent.
If the Lions go looking for another interior offensive lineman later in the draft, among the best available would be Nate Herbig (Stanford), Beau Benzschawel (Wisconsin), Elgton Jenkins (Mississippi State) and Michael Deiter (Wisconsin).