Ranking 5 Under-the-Radar Lions Heading into 2020
Jason Ross Jr.
After a 3-12-1 season, Detroit fans can only hope that there are players ready to step into bigger roles and make a more prominent impact in the coming months.
Let’s take a look at five guys that are flying under the radar heading into 2020:
5.) WR Quintez Cephus
Cephus’ now teammate Jeff Okudah labeled him as “the best receiver I went against."
The fifth-round selection out of Wisconsin will likely be vying for the fifth receiver spot in year one.
His role will be limited, but the potential to make an impact is still there.
Given his blocking ability and overall strength, the Lions could deploy Cephus in running scenarios and get experimental with him in the passing game.
4.) DE Austin Bryant
Bryant was only able to take the field in four games last season due to injuries that appeared to carry over from his Clemson days.
Due to the release of Devon Kennard, an opportunity is available for Bryant to prove he’s the EDGE rusher that Detroit drafted him to be in 2019.
He’s proven to be versatile, so Detroit could shift him around, if need be.
Barring any injuries, Bryant could showcase his potential in year two.
3.) CB Amani Oruwariye
Sticking with the theme of players that could be poised to break out in year two, Oruwariye is perhaps at the top of the list for Detroit.
Similar to Bryant, he had limited playing time as a rookie.
He only played in nine games, but the numbers would tell you he made the most out of the time he did see.
He finished the 2019 campaign with 17 solo tackles and two interceptions, while playing in just 19 percent of the team’s total defensive snaps.
2.) WR Marvin Hall
Hall’s 4.28 40-yard dash time has vaulted him into somewhat of a niche role as Detroit’s deep-threat receiver.
He could turn into more than that, as he continues to develop. But, it was certainly his calling card last season.
Hall had a three-game stretch in October during which he averaged 40.2 yards per catch.
Most of his success came with Matthew Stafford under center. So, the prospect of those two being reunited is more reason to get excited about the Lions’ offense in 2020.
1.) RB Jason Huntley
Huntley could certainly be labeled as one of the better late-round selections from the 2020 draft.
The second running back that Detroit selected this past April -- Georgia product D'Andre Swift was taken in the second round -- has the potential to emerge as Lions’ third back this upcoming season and make a dent on special teams.
Huntley, the only running back in the draft to surpass 1,000 receiving yards in college, could be an ideal piece to deploy in third-down passing situations.
Not to be pessimistic, but the Lions’ injury issues in the backfield have been well-chronicled. So, having depth will be imperative.