During a typical NFL offseason with OTAs and minicamp practices, we get our first glimpse at who might earn a starting a role and where the competition is tough.
Since this year's offseason program is fully virtual, we have a lot to look forward to in that regard, since we won't see any lineups until training camp. Which position battle are you looking forward to most?
I asked the Detroitlions.com crew, and here's what they had to say:
Tim Twentyman: Right guard
There are a number of competitions I'm excited to see play out, running back and linebacker among them. But the right guard spot is another one that could be heavily contested and fun to see how it shakes out.
The Lions re-signed veterans Kenny Wiggins and Oday Aboushi this offseason. Wiggins played 438 snaps last year and Aboushi 143. The teams also liked where undrafted rookie Beau Benzschawel was trending by the end of last year. Then the team drafted Jonah Jackson in the third round and Logan Stenberg in the fourth round. Starter Joe Dahl returns on the left side, and it's logical to expect he has a leg up to start there, though that's certainly not etched in stone, but who emerges on the right side will be interesting to watch.
There's a lot of names there expected to throw their hat into the ring.
Mike O'Hara: Running back
My eyes will be on the running backs from the start of training camp until the last play of the season.
There are so many possibilities. For example: Does Kerryon Johnson return for a second season shortened by injury to take over as the lead back? Does rookie D’Andre Swift take away some snaps as a runner and slot receiver? That would keep Johnson and Swift on the field at the same time in some situations.
Does Bo Scarbrough become strictly a short-yardage specialist? And does another rookie back – fifth-round speedster Jason Huntley – work in as a big-play threat out of the backfield, receiver and return specialist?
There's a lot to watch. Can't wait to see what happens.
View photos as the Detroit Lions practice facility reopened on a limited basis Wednesday, June 10, 2020 in Allen Park, Mich.
Tori Petry: Offensive guard
After last year's rotation on the interior of the offensive line and the departure of Graham Glasgow in free agency, it will be interesting to watch who ends up filling those spots on either side of Frank Ragnow.
The Lions traded up to acquire Jonah Jackson in the draft for a reason, but he'll have to compete for one of two spots with returning starter Joe Dahl and veteran rotational guard Kenny Wiggins, as well as fourth-round pick Logan Stenberg.
Editor's Pick: Linebacker
With a lot of returning players — Jarrad Davis, Christian Jones, Jahlani Tavai — and a few new faces — Jamie Collins Sr., Reggie Ragland and Elijah Lee —the linebacker room is pretty crowded.
Jones said earlier this offseason there's a role available in the Lions' multiple defense for whoever proves themselves. I'm interested to see who earns those roles.