To say that expectations of the Detroit Lions offensive line in 2022 are high would be an understatement. The unit has two Pro Bowlers downtown, Frank Ragnow and Jonah Jackson. Additionally, they have one of the most underrated left-ties in the game, in former first-round picker Taylor Decker, and a potential five offensive picks in last year’s first-round selection, Penei Sewell. These are four out of five positions where Lions have not only above-average talents, but also potentially elite players.
Last year, the unit performed quite well, despite the fact that two of its best players – Decker and Ragnow – spent a lot of time with injuries. Their performance in 2021 was ranked 13th in the league according to the latest PFF rankings, which is impressive considering their starting line-up did not include the top five players in a single snap this season.
As Sewell was expected to potentially make a big leap in the second year, and the line going into OTA is much healthier than they finished the season, suddenly the bar was raised … and raised significantly.
PFF analyst Mike Renner has a preliminary five in the ranking of offensive lines, and the Detroit Lions not only broke the top five but also the top three:
It is fair to say that expectations inside the Allen Park building fit that forecast.
“I’d say this is the most talented line I’ve been a part of, 100 percent,” Decker said last week. “I’m not necessarily a talent evaluator, but we just have a group of guys who are intelligent, confident, fit. We can go out and run with a group of guys around the perimeter, or we can run down – one defender, two defenders, duo, whatever that may be. We have people who can do many things. “
“I think we can be the best in the league,” Jackson said in April. “AND know we can be the best in the league. “
Talking is cheap at the start of the off-season, but the bar has been set for this unit and can’t be much higher.