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By the Numbers: Lions Look to Build on 2022 Offensive Success

Analyzing the Detroit Lions' 2022 season through statistics.

The Detroit Lions evolved immensely over the course of the 2022 season. In the span of 17 games, they showed tremendous growth on the offensive side of the ball, and became one of the league's most potent groups under the leadership of coordinator Ben Johnson.

After a strong offseason, they're believed to be among the league's most improved teams. If they are to achieve new heights, the Lions will need to maintain their strengths and improve their areas of weakness.

Here's a look at the Lions' 2022 season, by the numbers. 

Offense DVOA: 13.7%

Football Outsiders' popular metric, Defense-adjusted Value Over Average, seeks to evaluate a team's success above the league's average. In 2022, the Lions ranked 13.7% above average, based on their performance. 

This mark ranked fifth in the league. The four teams above them included the Kansas City Chiefs, Buffalo Bills, Philadelphia Eagles and Cincinnati Bengals. Each played until at least the second weekend of the playoffs, with the Chiefs besting the Eagles in the Super Bowl. 

With the likes of Amon-Ra St. Brown returning to the fold, another efficient season from quarterback Jared Goff will likely keep the Lions atop these charts. 

Defensive DVOA: 7.3%

Where a positive DVOA is good for an offense, it's poor for a defense. The Lions ranked 28th in this stat defensively, which fit the team's status as one of the league's worst. 

General manager Brad Holmes made this a point of emphasis in the offseason, as the Lions rekindled the flame of their defense. Plenty of talent was brought in, with no area benefitting more than the secondary. 

Detroit should be much improved in this metric in 2023, as its reloaded cast should perform much better. 

Amon-Ra St. Brown: 64% of catches went for first downs

The Lions have a budding star in the USC product. As he enters his third season as a pro, St. Brown has established himself as one of the league's best receivers. 

His rookie season was a pleasant surprise, as he broke the team's record for yards by a rookie. Last year, however, he proved to be an elite pass-catcher with a knack for moving the chains.

He notched a first down on 64.2 percent of his receptions last season, an astounding number of conversions. In addition, he also caught six touchdowns

From the end of 2021 through the first two weeks of 2022, he went eight straight games with at least eight receptions. In his career, he has 11 games with at least eight catches. 

Offensive red-zone touchdown percentage: 66.2%

The Lions were effective in the red zone throughout the season. They leaned on their physical offensive line to convert opportunities into touchdowns rather than settling for field goals. This mark ranked fourth in the league. 

Much of this production will have to be replaced, as Jamaal Williams was responsible for many of the Lions' goal-line scores. However, the team feels confident in free agent addition David Montgomery's ability to punch it in from short distances. 

This success was a key part of the Lions' late-season surge. They took advantage of their chances and were adept at converting red-zone opportunities to finish off drives. 

Jared Goff: 76% of passes on target

Goff's improvements over the second half of the season have been well-documented. Yet, his overall body of work placed him among the league's top half of signal-callers. 

He ranked 14th in the league in terms of passes on target, with 76.2 percent of his passes fitting the criteria. This mark ranked above the likes of Trevor Lawrence, Justin Herbert and Lamar Jackson. 

Turnover differential: +7

The Lions emerged as one of the league's better teams in terms of turnover differential throughout the 2022 campaign. Dan Campbell spoke often about the team's hopes to win the turnover battle, and it did many times during the year. 

A big reason for this was Goff going the final nine games without throwing an interception. However, the defense forced at least one turnover in all but two games, too. 

Detroit forced multiple turnovers in three of the season's final five games, including two apiece in each of the last two contests. The Lions ranked fourth in the league in turnover differential.