The website Profootballfocus.com did some comprehensive research on the performance of all 32 offensive lines from the 2011 season. After looking at every offensive play from last year, the website came to a conclusion that the Lions had the 10th best offensive line in the NFL last year.
The Lions struggled at times to open holes in the run game, but Sims is hoping a big weight gain and added muscle will help him do his part.
“The last couple years I’ve been playing really light, a lot lighter than I’ve been used to playing," said Sims, who said there were times last season when he played under 300 pounds. “I felt like there were some parts of my game that were affected by that."
Sims thinks he hasn’t been nearly as effective as a run blocker at a lighter weight, so he reported to the offseason training program this year approximately 20 pounds heavier. He was 315 pounds during the offseason training program, which he thinks is a much better playing weight.
We’ll see how much of an impact it has when the pads come on and hitting starts.
The Long Snappers:
By the numbers:
10: Center Dominic Raiola became just the 10th player in Lions history to play in 170 career games (172) with the team.
1: The number of career bad snaps by long snapper Don Muhlbach that have resulted in a missed extra point or field goal (extra point against Vikings in 2004). That spans an eight-year career and 116 games.
6: The number of consecutive seasons Railoa has been voted a team captain.
The Lions had Raiola, Sims, Peterman, Muhlbach, Gandy and McClendon on the 53-man roster coming out of camp last season. It’s very likely the same interior line making it out of camp again this year.
The Lions brought in J.C. Oram for a pre-draft visit and were happy to sign him after the draft. He played in 48 career games at Weber State (47 starts) and came into the league with a reputation as a powerful run blocker.
The Lions signed long snapper Matt Camilli after a workout last month and he’ll compete with Muhlbach for the team’s long snapper duties. The Lions re-signed Muhlbach to a one-year extension this offseason and he’s been terrific for them. He has 32 special teams tackles and he’d have to really have a bad camp to lose his job. That, or the Lions decide Camilli is just as good and is a cheaper option.
Player to watch:
The Lions have coveted first-round pick
Could that put right guard Stephen Peterman on alert?
Peterman has started every game for the Lions over the last two seasons and played particularly well the second half of last season. Peterman is 30 and has two years and over $5 million left on a five-year deal he signed in 2009.
The smart bet is on Reiff staying at tackle, but stranger things have happened.