Skip to main content

All Lions Mailbag: Concerns at Running Back, Matt Patricia's Game Management

This week's mailbag focuses on the Lions' injury concerns at running back and Matt Patricia's game management

If we are bad this year and the regime is cleaned out, do you think that's it for (Matthew) Stafford in Detroit? -- @JacobyJonesSZN

It's very possible that if a new regime comes in and it is given the greenlight to start from the ground up, it will want to get as much for Stafford in a trade as possible. It doesn't make a whole lot of sense to keep around a great quarterback when there's going to be a few down years. 

Also, if the Lions are truly that bad this year and the wheels fall off, they would likely have a good shot at one of the top quarterbacks coming out in the draft. 

I am a Stafford supporter, and would hate to see him go. I think he can win in this league with a decent running game and a defense. You put him on another team, and I think he finds much more success than he's had in Detroit. -- Logan Lamorandier

Can we ever draft a workhorse running back that doesn't get hurt every three games? -- @Dglen02

Detroit seems to have a bad track record with this. From Kevin Jones to Kevin Smith and Jahvid Best, the injury bug has always found a way to find a home within the Lions' backfield. 

It has derailed a variety of Detroit backs' careers throughout the years, and is definitely a noteworthy topic to bring up at this point with D'Andre Swift having missed so much time in practice with an upper left leg injury.

The injury could also cause Swift to be held out of games to start the season, with the Lions' first regular season game coming Sept. 13 against the Bears.

While it is a concern that he's missed so many days of practice with him being just a rookie, I wouldn't start labeling him as a back that's going to get hurt all the time just yet. 

Let's see him get some reps under his belt in the regular season first before we start saying that he's injury prone. 

As for Kerryon Johnson, I'm already ready to start saying that. 

Entering his third season in the league, he's failed to suit up for a full 16-game season.

Sad but true, I think he's become the definition of an injury-prone back.

Maybe, just maybe, with time, Swift will be able to break that mold. -- Vito Chirco

Do you think Matt Patricia's sense of game management will ever improve? -- @Christian_Sov12

At this point, no. There's been no evidence of it up to this point. 

And despite the Lions losing Matthew Stafford last season for the final eight games, there's no way the team should've gone winless the rest of the way and finished with a 3-12-1 mark. 

Some of those losses can be attributed to poor preparation and game management on the part of Matt Patricia. 

Scroll to Continue

Recommended Lions Articles


3 Free Agent Cornerbacks Lions Should Target

Detroit Lions currently have one open roster position.


Lions 2022 Roster Bubble: Running Backs

These two Detroit Lions running backs are likely going to have to battle to earn a roster position in 2022.


2022 Stat Prediction for Jamaal Williams

SI All Lions provides its stat prediction for Detroit Lions running back Jamaal Williams in 2022.

And going into his third season on the job, I expect more of the same. The Lions will once again fall victim to Patricia's porous ways when it comes to game management and preparation. -- Chirco

How has (Jeff) Okudah's camp performance been? Has he looked like a No. 3 overall pick? -- @DrBainyo

In regard to Okudah, it is fairly certain supporters would be frustrated if he wasn't a starter day one. 

It is fair to have very high expectations for the No. 3 overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft. 

Unfortunately, Okudah has not benefited from the altered offseason. 

Early in camp, he struggled with his footing, and he has made some common rookie errors. 

That's not to say it has been all bad. 

He is competitive, he has a strong drive to learn and has shown improvement daily. 

But, this Detroit offense is not an easy one to be learning against. 

If Detroit were to play Chicago today, second-year cornerback Amani Oruwariye would be the starter. -- John Maakaron 

What has surprised you about the offense? -- @VauntedJT

Unfortunately, rookie D'Andre Swift has missed the last eight days of practice. 

It would have been interesting to evaluate how he progressed. But, that hasn't been possible. 

Ty Johnson and Jason Huntley have stepped up, and have performed well all throughout training camp. 

With Bo Scarbrough being injured, that bodes well for the young running backs on the roster to not only make the team, but also be included in weekly gameplans. 

The other surprising aspect has been Jamal Agnew's smooth transition to wide receiver. 

It is highly likely now that Detroit will carry six receivers to start the season. -- Maakaron