Saturday, January 1, 2022

Detroit Lions Week 17 NFL Power Rankings Roundup

Throughout the 2021 NFL season, we will compile a consensus NFL Power Rankings that averages the rankings of all 32 NFL teams.

Here is where the Detroit Lions rank in terms of average, best and worst:

  • Average ranking: 29.8 (31st)
  • Best ranking: 28 (
  • Worst ranking: 31 (Multiple)

Below you will find a Week 17 roundup for the Lions in our consensus 2021 NFL Power Rankings.

ESPN -- Rank: 31

Non-QB MVP: LB Jalen Reeves-Maybin

This isn't an obvious choice, with more notable names on the roster, including running back D'Andre Swift, tight end T.J. Hockenson and even rookie wideout Amon-Ra St. Brown. However, Reeves-Maybin is a player who exemplifies the culture of hard work and tenacity that first-year Lions coach Dan Campbell is trying to build in Detroit for the future, which is why his bigger role on defense this season has been so valuable. In fact, Reeves-Maybin was the first name to pop into Campbell's mind when the coach was recently asked for some of his most valuable players throughout the season. "I know he missed a couple of games here due to injury, but when he's been out there on defense and on special teams, he just makes plays," Campbell said. "He's a football player, and that doesn't go unnoticed." -- Eric Woodyard -- Rank: 28

The Lions are going to give you everything they have for 60 minutes. We saw it again on Sunday, when Tim Boyle -- subbing for Jared Goff (COVID-19) -- marched Detroit to the Falcons' goal line late in the fourth quarter before throwing a game-sealing interception. Some Lions fans will take the crushing loss in exchange for the improved chance at the No. 1 overall pick. Detroit currently sits at No. 2 in the 2022 NFL Draft pecking order, one half-game "behind" the Jaguars. Something tells us Dan Campbell will bite the kneecap of any person who so much as whispers "tanking" around him.

CBS Sports -- Rank: 29

Without Jared Goff, they competed against the Falcons on the road. It's another god sign for Dan Campbell.

USA Today -- Rank: 31

The best thing they've done in 2021 is assemble an imposing offensive line -- put a pin in "Assembly Line" -- that should quickly be reflective of the culture head coach Dan Campbell is trying to establish.

The Athletic -- Rank: 30

Is he The Guy? No. Don't let his 2-2 record and 9-to-2 touchdown-interception ratio in his last four games fool you: Jared Goff is not the Lions' quarterback solution. He has hardly been their biggest problem this season. Sometimes, he can even be quite good, as we saw in Week 15 when he threw three touchdown passes, no interceptions and averaged more than 8 yards per attempt against Arizona. (He sat out the Week 16 loss to the Falcons while on the reserve/COVID-19 list.) But after a roller-coaster season with him, the Lions should still look at every possible option (even while Goff remains under contract, with a $31 million cap hit) next season.

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