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RedRamage

Who is the Lions non-QB MVP this year?

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6 hours ago, cruzer1 said:

Ebron is tied for the team lead in rushing touchdowns.

touche

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4 hours ago, djhutch said:

I don't mean to pick a fight, but I have never understood the whole "he's just a kicker, not a real player" thing.  The game of football is a game of taking territory. If you have someone in your arsenal that can put points on the board from long distances, or force the other team to have to drive longer distances to do so, they are an invaluable part of the team.  

I think the impact they make compared to the average player at their position is low, and I consider it a low impact position in general. 

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http://www.mlive.com/lions/index.ssf/2016/12/lions_sam_martin_closing_in_on.html

Quote

 

ALLEN PARK -- Only six teams are gaining fewer yards than the Detroit Lions. Only four are going three-and-out more often. 

This is an offense that has been clutch, to be sure, but also wildly inconsistent. And all these short drives could be killing them -- but, they're not.

There's a lot of reason for that, of course. But being able to flip field position at a historic pace has to be chief among them.

Sam Martin is netting 45.4 yards per punt this season, which puts him on pace to shatter the NFL record with five weeks to go. Johnny Hekker currently holds the mark at 44.2 net yards per attempt.

"It's been a pretty good year," a humbled Martin said. "I mean, I had a bad game in Houston. Other than that I've felt pretty good about my season so far."

As he should.

Martin is averaging 48.9 yards per punt overall, which is fourth in the league. But that's not a very good measure by which to judge punters, because the best ones don't just kick the ball as far as they can. The best ones can also minimize returns by angling the ball to one side of the field or the other. Sometimes they go for more loft, sometimes less.

And that's what sets Martin and the Lions apart. He's always had a big leg, but now that he's in his fourth year, he's expanded his arsenal of strategic punts. He declined to get specific -- "I can't tell you all my secrets" -- but they've done the job. He's limited returns to just 5.5 yards per attempt, which is sixth best even though he's also hitting the ball further than most.

"He's got some pretty unique things he can do with that ball in his hand and his foot, you know," coach Jim Caldwell said. "Oftentimes he's working on some things like for weeks and weeks and weeks, long before you see them out on the field, but he's working at them. Every single day he's out there doing something a little different, trying to get a little bit better feel for what he does.

"He's obsessed with it, and I think you're seeing that he's improving as a result of that."

Martin acknowledged he has different clubs in his bag these days, though said most of the credit for his huge numbers goes to his gunners' ability to cover the traditional ball. Johnson Bademosi was signed this year specifically because of his ability at that position, and he's paired with Don Carey, one of the best gunners that special teams coach Joe Marciano has ever seen.

They are considered two of the best in the league. So pair them with one of the biggest-legged punters in the league, and it's no wonder Martin is closing in on one of the greatest seasons ever by a punter.

"I got a few more clubs that I use," Martin said. "For the most part, the numbers you see have come from more traditional punting. They're coming from just being more consistent than anything. I've hit a few different types of kicks in there, but for the most part, I've just been hitting good balls and our cover guys are covering like crazy. Even the oh-**** balls, those guys cover it well. And then my good balls they pretty much smother."

And that's gone a long way toward helping a team that is mediocre on both sides of the ball -- 26th in total offense, and 15th in total defense -- take a 2.5-game lead in the NFC North with just five to play.


 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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http://www.mlive.com/lions/index.ssf/2016/12/lions_sam_martin_closing_in_on.html

 

ALLEN PARK -- Only six teams are gaining fewer yards than the Detroit Lions. Only four are going three-and-out more often. 

This is an offense that has been clutch, to be sure, but also wildly inconsistent. And all these short drives could be killing them -- but, they're not.

There's a lot of reason for that, of course. But being able to flip field position at a historic pace has to be chief among them.

Sam Martin is netting 45.4 yards per punt this season, which puts him on pace to shatter the NFL record with five weeks to go. Johnny Hekker currently holds the mark at 44.2 net yards per attempt.

"It's been a pretty good year," a humbled Martin said. "I mean, I had a bad game in Houston. Other than that I've felt pretty good about my season so far."

As he should.

Martin is averaging 48.9 yards per punt overall, which is fourth in the league. But that's not a very good measure by which to judge punters, because the best ones don't just kick the ball as far as they can. The best ones can also minimize returns by angling the ball to one side of the field or the other. Sometimes they go for more loft, sometimes less.

And that's what sets Martin and the Lions apart. He's always had a big leg, but now that he's in his fourth year, he's expanded his arsenal of strategic punts. He declined to get specific -- "I can't tell you all my secrets" -- but they've done the job. He's limited returns to just 5.5 yards per attempt, which is sixth best even though he's also hitting the ball further than most.

"He's got some pretty unique things he can do with that ball in his hand and his foot, you know," coach Jim Caldwell said. "Oftentimes he's working on some things like for weeks and weeks and weeks, long before you see them out on the field, but he's working at them. Every single day he's out there doing something a little different, trying to get a little bit better feel for what he does.

"He's obsessed with it, and I think you're seeing that he's improving as a result of that."

Martin acknowledged he has different clubs in his bag these days, though said most of the credit for his huge numbers goes to his gunners' ability to cover the traditional ball. Johnson Bademosi was signed this year specifically because of his ability at that position, and he's paired with Don Carey, one of the best gunners that special teams coach Joe Marciano has ever seen.

They are considered two of the best in the league. So pair them with one of the biggest-legged punters in the league, and it's no wonder Martin is closing in on one of the greatest seasons ever by a punter.

"I got a few more clubs that I use," Martin said. "For the most part, the numbers you see have come from more traditional punting. They're coming from just being more consistent than anything. I've hit a few different types of kicks in there, but for the most part, I've just been hitting good balls and our cover guys are covering like crazy. Even the oh-**** balls, those guys cover it well. And then my good balls they pretty much smother."

And that's gone a long way toward helping a team that is mediocre on both sides of the ball -- 26th in total offense, and 15th in total defense -- take a 2.5-game lead in the NFC North with just five to play.

 

                       

I think it is amusing that he has strategic secrets that he keeps about punting, but I do not question success. The Lions would not be able to so consistently win the field position battle this year without Martin, and field position has been a huge factor in protecting this undermanned defense. (I seem to recall the Titans and Bears games as games where foolish plays by Andre Roberts put the team in bad field positions from which they could not recover.)

Martin's success (and Prater's) is a reminder of how important the special teams units are. Quinn deserves credit for strengthening this unit with Bademosi. It almost makes up for his overeagerness in drafting of a long snapper.

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But yah, that was always my point about addressing LS in the draft. Being rock solid on STs is relatively cheap and can make a bigger impact than people realize. 

 

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God dammit that was not supposed to be a "spoiler" above and I don't know how to fix it

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21 hours ago, Nastradamus said:

God damnit that was not supposed to be a "spoiler" above and I don't know how to fix it

Fixed.

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A little off topic, but not worth it's own thread probably... but with the Pro-Bowl coming up soon... 

Do you think any Lions get in as "starters"?  Obviously I'm only talking about the honor here... the game itself it "whatever..." but are any of the Lions the best in the conference?  I'd have a very hard time nominating anyone other than Stafford, and even then I'd be surprised if he was #1.  I suspect DAX will get the nod or Matt Ryan.  Maybe Rogers if he really lights it up to end out the season.

 

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1 hour ago, RedRamage said:

A little off topic, but not worth it's own thread probably... but with the Pro-Bowl coming up soon... 

Do you think any Lions get in as "starters"?  Obviously I'm only talking about the honor here... the game itself it "whatever..." but are any of the Lions the best in the conference?  I'd have a very hard time nominating anyone other than Stafford, and even then I'd be surprised if he was #1.  I suspect DAX will get the nod or Matt Ryan.  Maybe Rogers if he really lights it up to end out the season.

 

Punter

 

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On 11/24/2016 at 8:40 AM, Hart said:

I'd probably vote for Decker but really the offensive line as a whole is starting to pay dividends with all those high draft picks we have used.  

From a pass protection stand point I agree. However, we rank 29th in rushing this season. I get that some of that is a lack of having a true running threat and I get that screen plays to Theo Riddick is essentially our running game,. However, I'm still not sold that the O-line is over the hurdle when it comes to being a solid run blocking line. Maybe it is all due to a lack of talent in the backfield though.

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12 minutes ago, Mr.TaterSalad said:

From a pass protection stand point I agree. However, we rank 29th in rushing this season. I get that some of that is a lack of having a true running threat and I get that screen plays to Theo Riddick is essentially our running game,. However, I'm still not sold that the O-line is over the hurdle when it comes to being a solid run blocking line. Maybe it is all due to a lack of talent in the backfield though.

It is partially talent in the backfield, but the Lions are dead last in the league in yards before contact for their RB's which reasons that the line isn't doing a good job of opening holes or preventing penetration:

 

 

NFC North really representing at the bottom there.

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I'm really surprised Reiff didn't do better at RT. There was no reason to think he couldn't be a stud there. Upgrade the RT spot and get the rookies in the weight room. Keep Warford. We should be able to improve there next year. Tomlinson......

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11 hours ago, RedRamage said:

A little off topic, but not worth it's own thread probably... but with the Pro-Bowl coming up soon... 

Do you think any Lions get in as "starters"?  Obviously I'm only talking about the honor here... the game itself it "whatever..." but are any of the Lions the best in the conference?  I'd have a very hard time nominating anyone other than Stafford, and even then I'd be surprised if he was #1.  I suspect DAX will get the nod or Matt Ryan.  Maybe Rogers if he really lights it up to end out the season.

 

I think I read we have nobody in the top 5 at their position. It may have excluded Stafford

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18 hours ago, number20 said:

Punter

 

Either kicker. Prater is tied with a bunch of guys with 28 FG which is 2nd most in the league. Martin is 2nd in net yards. The Lions do have a solid kicking game.

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