Posts Tagged ‘Louis Delmas’

Six Hidden Match Ups between the Detroit Lions and Miami Dolphins

Sunday, November 9th, 2014


By Kent Lee Platte

With Calvin Johnson sidelined, few had high hopes for the Detroit Lions, who had long suffered whenever their best players were ff the field. To the surprise of everyone, most notably the Saints and Falcons, the Lions lumbered on to a 3-0 record without the future hall of famer.  The #1 defense and free agent addition Golden Tate at wide receiver carried the team to a 6-2 record at the midpoint of the season. Time enough for a Bye to regain health and rest. They won’t have an easy day for their first game back, as they go up against a hot Miami Dolphins team coming off a blowout victory against the Chargers. This was an exciting game to plan for, as there are so many strong match ups on both sides of the ball. Even so there are plenty of hidden stories to look forward to in this key game.

Tahir Whitehead vs. Ryan Tannehill

In the past few seasons,  the Lions had little to fear from scrambling quarterbacks due to the presence of an athletic, smart middle linebacker in Stephen Tulloch. Tulloch left the season early, however, with a torn ACL, leaving those duties to a far more athletic but far rawer Tahir Whitehead. He has been sharing duties with Josh Bynes, but I find it hard to think the team will match up Bynes, who has strong instincts but poor speed, against Tannehill. Instead, it’s likely Whitehead who will draw this tough assignment, which will stretch his development to the limits. Can Whitehead show he’s developed to more than just a fill in role and really own that middle linebacker spot?

Golden Tate vs. Cortland Finnegan

A starting wide receiver, especially one presently rated in the top five, is rarely considered a hidden match up. In Tate’s case, he’s back to playing second fiddle to Calvin Johnson in the elite receivers return to the field. With as much as Tate has shown, it’s interesting to me to see him back in the number two role. It’s even more interesting to see him matched up with a player like Finmegan, who is known for his on field antics. Tate is a fiery competitor, and despite being one of the worst cornerbacks in football as a Ram, Finnegan has only been mediocre instead of terrible as a Dolphin.  It won’t be long before this one gets chippy.

Kyle Van Noy vs. The Road Back

I have written before about how the Detroit Lions are asking a LOT out of their rookie linebacker. He has been injured, so we haven’t been able to see if he has grown at all, but I doubt the team suddenly expects less of him. Van Noy was doing it all in camp, dropping into coverage, rushing from the edge, cutting gaps, just everything.  He showed how difficult the transition was with his preseason struggles, but we’ll finally get to see some regular season action. Van Noy has modeled his play (and his beard) after DeAndre Levy, who continues to play at an all pro level.  Will the rookie shine early, or will the struggle continue?

The Quarterbacks vs. The Schemes

It should come as a surprise to no one that Matthew Stafford has struggled against good pass defenses. Ryan Tannehill is in the same boat, as he found far less success against weaker defenses than he did against strong ones. It seems pretty intuitive that it would be an issue, but I’m not talking about a small dropoff for either signal caller.  This will be, for both players, their toughest match up of the season. The only top tier pass defenses the two have faced are the Bills and the Packers. Both lost against the Bills, while Stafford was able to notch a win against the rival Packers. It’s a tough match up on both sides.

Joe Lombardi vs. Louis Delmas

It’s still strange to see Delmas in a different uniform. The former Western Michigan Bronco had spent his entire pro career with the Lions before moving to the Dolphins in free agency this past offseason. Delmas has been a solid acquisition for the Dolphins, but some of his old tendencies are still present.  Joe Lombardi has not lived up to his namesake,  but I still hold out hope he can exploit a match up so obvious that even casual fans can see it. I would love to see some more creative routes on the inside of the field, drawing the safeties in so when the receiver changes direction we can see a safety slip sliding the wrong way. Delmas has been better coached in Miami than he ever was in Detroit, but he still makes some of those mistakes.  It’d be good for karma, anyway, it owes us some.

The Lions Defense vs. A Whole Lot of History

The Lions defense is presently ranked first in both yards per game and points per game. It’s the first time the team has ever had this distinction since becoming the Detroit Lions, with its last mention being the 1931 Portsmouth Spartans. Traditionally, the team has had their collapses and it has always started on the defensive side of the ball. The time is now for the team to give tradition the middle finger and really ram home how dominant they can be. Despite the sore loss of Nick Fairley, this is too good of an opportunity for a statement to be made. Not even necessarily a win,  though that would obviously be best. National outlets are already trying to find other defenses they think are the best, because it just can’t be the Lions, can it? This team needs to put their defense firmly on the map and mop the floor with Tannehill and co.

Five Draft Thoughts for Super Bowl Sunday

Sunday, February 2nd, 2014

Jeff Risdon, DLD Editor

Another Super Bowl, another year with the Lions long hibernating well before the big game. This is draft season for Detroit. Here are some thoughts on some players and strategies rattling around my head for this national holiday.

1. A couple of different little birdies have intimated that Louis Delmas will have to swallow a lot of pride, not to mention a few million dollars, if he wants to return to Detroit. He might not be willing to do that, which makes getting a NFL-ready safety a much bigger priority in the draft. (more…)

State of Lions Roster Breakdown

Tuesday, January 7th, 2014


Beast, follow @Beast1530 on Twitter


Six Hidden Matchups for the Lions/Browns Game

Sunday, October 13th, 2013

Graphic courtesy, where you can view their take on the matchup.

Kent Lee Platte, DLD Writer

For the past few weeks, the only hidden matchup I’ve been worrying about is my lack of a computer vs. my sanity.  Now that I have handily won that contest, it’s time to get back to football!  Plenty has happened in the past few weeks, but the Lions are essentially the same team they were when they obliterated the Bears and after watching the Packers game multiple times I’m convinced that is more a blip on the radar than it is an indication of how the team will perform moving forward.  Today’s game marks a chance for the Lions to maintain their tie for 1st with the Bears while pulling further ahead of the Packers, who defeated the Lions last week.  There are plenty of ‘will he or won’t he’ storylines concerning Calvin Johnson’s ability to play, while the availability of Tony Scheffler and Theo Riddick are enough of a certainty that we’re simply looking at who fills those shoes.  So what matchups are flying under the radar this week? (more…)

Fifty Three Man Roster Projection

Monday, August 26th, 2013

This catch vs. the Jets helped Matt Willis make the cut (Photo courtesy Detroit Lions)

By Beast, DLD Contributor

As the preseason is quickly approaching to an end and the regular season is about to start in a couple weeks, team executives and coaches must make tough decisions on which players to keep and which one to cut from the roster.  Now that the “dress rehearsal” (also known as game 3 of preseason) is over, there is a clearer picture of which players will make the 53 players roster.  Here is my projection based on what I think the Lions coaches and executives will keep for the regular season. (more…)

10 quick takes from Lions/Patriots

Thursday, August 22nd, 2013

Jeff Risdon, DLD Editor

I watched the game just once so far, in real time from the comfort of my living room. During the game I posted a live blog over at Bleacher Report, which you can find here.

Here are 10 fairly random thoughts before I call it a night: (more…)

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