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Lions Week 7 snap counts: Defense goes beefy vs. Falcons

SB Nation logo SB Nation 10/26/2020 Jeremy Reisman
a batter catcher and umpire during a baseball game © Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

Here’s a look at the Detroit Lions’ Week 7 snap counts against the Atlanta Falcons.

Offense

Quarterbacks:

Matthew Stafford: 62 (100%)

Running backs:

D’Andre Swift: 28 (45%) — 3 special teams snaps (13%)

Adrian Peterson: 19 (31%)

Kerryon Johnson: 14 (23%)

Jason Cabinda: 8 (13%) — 15 (65%)

Tight ends:

T.J. Hockenson: 44 (71%)

Jesse James: 25 (40%) — 10 (43%)

Isaac Nauta: 6 (10%) — 4 (17%)

Wide receivers:

Marvin Jones Jr.: 56 (90%)

Kenny Golladay: 52 (84%)

Danny Amendola: 33 (53%)

Jamal Agnew: 13 (21%) — 12 (52%)

Marvin Hall: 12 (19%)

Offensive tackles:

Taylor Decker: 62 (100%)

Tyrell Crosby: 62 (100%) — 6 (26%)

Matt Nelson: 0 (0%) — 6 (26%)

Guards/centers

Frank Ragnow: 62 (100%)

Jonah Jackson: 62 (100%) — 6 (26%)

Halapoulivaati Vaitai: 62 (100%) — 6 (26%)

Oday Aboushi: 0 (0%) — 6 (26%)

Joe Dahl: 0 (0%) — 6 (26%)

Observations:

  • The guard rotation is dead! Long live the guard rotation! The Lions stuck with their top five guys all game, and while the results were not great on the field—the had their lowest team pass blocking PFF grade of the season—it was nice to just see them stick with their favorite players out there.
  • Interesting to see D’Andre Swift play significantly more snaps than Adrian Peterson (28 vs. 19) but finish with fewer carries (11 vs. 9). This adds to the prevailing theory that Peterson is a bit of a tell for the defense when he’s on the field. He ran the ball 11 times out of the 19 snaps he was out there. Meanwhile, Swift only had nine carries on his 28 snaps (and four catches).
  • Tight end usage was down in this game, as the Lions spread out their offense more. Both Jesse James (55% to 40%) and Isaac Nauta (23% to 10%) saw decreased time, while Danny Amendola saw a big bump (35% to 53%).

Defense:

Defensive end:

Trey Flowers: 43 (56%)

Romeo Okwara: 42 (56%) — 12 (52%)

Defensive tackle:

Danny Shelton: 54 (72%) — 2 (9%)

Nick Williams: 45 (60%) — 2 (9%)

Da’Shawn Hand: 43 (57%) — 2 (9%)

John Penisini: 35 (47%)

Linebackers:

Jamie Collins Sr.: 70 (93%)

Jahlani Tavai: 43 (57%) — 7 (30%)

Christian Jones: 38 (51%) — 5 (22%)

Reggie Ragland: 37 (49%)

Jarrad Davis: 20 (27%) — 9 (39%)

Jalen Reeves-Maybin: 6 (8%) — 17 (74%)

Elijah Lee: 0 (0%) — 17 (74%)

Cornerbacks:

Amani Oruwariye: 70 (93%)

Jeff Okudah: 69 (92%)

Darryl Roberts: 38 (51%)

Tony McRae: 0 (0%) — 14 (61%)

Mike Ford: 0 (0%) — 10 (43%)

Safeties:

Duron Harmon: 69 (92%) — 2 (9%)

Tracy Walker: 66 (88%) — 7 (30%)

Jayron Kearse: 31 (41%) — 7 (30%)

Will Harris: 6 (8%) — 15 (65%)

C.J. Moore: 0 (0%) — 15 (65%)

Observations:

  • The Lions really beefed up on the defensive line in this game, clearly looking to continue their success stopping the run. Look at the defensive tackle snap counts from Week 6 to Week 7:

Nick Williams: 52% last week — 60% this week

Danny Shelton: 50% last week — 72% this week

Da’Shawn Hand: 50% last week — 57% this week

John Penisini: 33% last week — 47% this week

And, well, those players certainly rose to the occasion on Sunday:

  • Per usual, there were a bunch of changes at the linebacker level. Jahlani Tavai worked his way back into the lineup, after playing just 24 snaps last week, he had nearly double that this week. Christian Jones also jumped from 34% last week to 51% this week. Even Jarrad Davis saw a significant bump from 17% against the Jaguars to 27% against the Falcons.
  • All of this increase in linebacker and defensive tackle playing time really took opportunities away from the secondary. Darryl Roberts was on the field for just 51% of the snaps after seeing 88% last week. And Jayron Kearse’s workload dropped from 59% to 41% this week.
  • Mike Ford’s return from injured reserve resulted in a modest 10 special teams snaps.

Special teams:

Jack Fox: 13 special teams snaps (57%)

Don Muhlbach: 9 (39%)

Matt Prater: 6 (26%)

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