Detroit Lions Top 10 Players For The 2023 NFL Season Reaction

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10. S Kerby Joseph (High: 4; Low: 12)
Last year’s ranking: 39

Among the top 10, no one took a bigger leap that Joseph. The third-round safety was expected to mostly be a reserve in his rookie season, seeing as the Lions had two established starters and Joseph was still relatively new to the position. Instead, injury forced Joseph into the lineup in the first month of the season, and by the end of the year, he was one of the biggest playmakers on defense.

Joseph still has plenty of room to grow, but when you tally four interceptions—and three of those come against Aaron Rodgers—you’re going to quickly become a fan favorite.

9. CB Cameron Sutton (High: 8; Low: 10)
Last year’s ranking: N/A

We’ve yet to see Sutton in a Lions jersey, but based on the reaction from Steelers media and fans after Detroit signed him in free agency, it became clear Detroit got a real one. Sutton may not come with flashy stats (eight interceptions in six years), but he’s been trending in the right direction as a starter for just the past three years, and he brings an essential amount of leadership and football IQ to a position that has lacked both in previous years.

8. QB Jared Goff (High: 5; Low: 11)
Last year’s ranking: 19

What a difference a year makes. At this time last season, many were wondering if Jared Goff was truly a “throw-in” for the Matthew Stafford trade. While he had finished 2021 with a relatively strong effort, the Lions offense was largely inefficient—particularly the passing game.

But, surprise surprise, invest in some weapons and your quarterback looks better! Of course, to only credit his supporting cast for Goff’s success would be a disservice to the quarterback himself. He played a big part in establishing and installing the offense with coordinator Ben Johnson, and his wise decision-making allowed him to avoid a single interception for the final nine games—a huge reason Detroit finished 8-2 down the stretch.

7. G Jonah Jackson (High: 5; Low: 11)
Last year’s ranking: 9

On an offensive line that features three first-round picks, Jackson often gets overlooked. He remains a key component to Detroit’s revamped rushing attacked. And while his pass protection is a bit more of a work in progress, he didn’t allow a single sack in 2022.

That being said, Jackson’s future in Detroit is a little bit of a mystery. Entering the final year of his rookie deal, it wouldn’t surprise anyone if Jackson signed a long-term contract literally any day now. But at the same time, the Lions may be saving that money for extensions coming in the near future to players like Goff, Amon-Ra St. Brown and Penei Sewell.

6. DB C.J. Gardner-Johnson (High: 5; Low: 10)
Last year’s ranking: N/A

You can tell how important C.J. Gardner-Johnson’s addition to the team is by just going back and looking at the reaction to his injury scare earlier this week. Gardner-Johnson’s versatility and talent not only give the Lions so many different options with what they can do in their secondary, but his swag and attitude will clearly help this young defense play with a lot more confidence.

Oh, and NFL insiders think he’s a top-eight safety in the league.

5. OT Taylor Decker (High: 5; Low: 8)
Last year’s ranking: 3

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