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3 biggest surprises from the Lions’ 2018 53-man roster Nearly two hours after the deadline , the Detroit Lions finally announced the final cuts in order to get their roster down to the 53 men required by the league. If you haven’t seen the list of players on the Lions 2018 roster, be sure to check it out here.Here are the three biggest surprises from the Lions’ initial roster.SIX wide receivers?Throughout this entire preseason, we debated whether the Lions should keep four or five wide receivers. I was in the four wide receiver camp, along with our own Hamza Baccouche, but I’ll admit Brandon Powell played well enough this preseason to be on an NFL roster.However, I don’t think I saw anyone suggest the Lions keep six receivers on the roster, and for that sixth receiver to be Bradley Marquez. Marquez was a guy that Detroit used a lot on special teams this preseason, but he made almost no impact whatsoever as a receiver. In three games, he had just one reception for a 3-yard touchdown. However, we probably should have known something was up when he sat out the entire preseason finale.10 offensive linemen, 7 defensive linemenThis offseason we boasted that the Lions’ offensive line depth had improved, but Detroit spent the entire preseason trying to prove us wrong. The offensive line struggled mightily in pass protection and only occasionally opened up rushing lanes for the Lions’ new-and-improved backfield. As a result, many believed a lot of the Lions reserve offensive linemen were on the chopping block this weekend. Instead, the Lions kept nearly everyone. Kenny Wiggins? In. Leo Koloamatangi? In. Joe Dahl? In. Greg Robinson? No. Hey, how did you get here, Greg? Go away.The only guy it seems the Lions didn’t keep was Corey Robinson , who they traded away to the Carolina Panthers for a conditional 2020 pick. On the other side of the ball, we figured the Lions would keep all the help they could get. Instead, the Lions cleaned house. Alex Barrett, Jeremiah Valoaga and Jeremiah Ledbetter were all semi-surprising cuts, and left Detroit with just seven total defensive linemen: Ezekiel Ansah, Anthony Zettel, Da’Shawn Hand, A’Shawn Robinson, Ricky Jean Francois and Sylvester Williams. Of course, guys like Devon Kennard and Eli Harold will act as defensive ends quite often in this defense, but it’s still surprising to see such low numbers on the defensive line.Cutting DeShawn SheadShead was being heralded as one of the Lions’ most underrated signings this offseason, and he didn’t even end up making the cut. Shead was undoubtedly hurt by an injury that caused him to miss some time in the middle of the preseason, but he returned in time to showcase everything he has in the preseason finale.Shead entered training camp as the team’s starting No. 2 cornerback. Though he eventually would cede that role to Nevin Lawson, you’d think Shead would’ve had a chance to win it back after Lawson’s nightmarish third preseason game against the Buccaneers. Instead, the Lions decided to cut Shead, leaving Teez Tabor as the only pure outside cornerback to come in should Lawson continue to struggle. While we haven’t gotten into scoreboard watching for playoff implications quite yet—it’s just mid-October y’all Color Rush Christian Jones Jersey , calm down—it is the bye week for Detroit Lions fans, so all we can literally do is scoreboard watch.So while we do that, we may as well dust off the Detroit Lions rooting guide. This won’t become a weekly feature quite yet, because the Lions have to prove to me they’re going to be in playoff contention, and the NFC picture has to be a little more clear to know which teams to truly root for.But, for now, here are the teams to root for in Week 6.The NFC North no-brainersBears (3-1) at Dolphins (3-2) — 1 p.m. ET (FOX)Root for: DolphinsBelieve it or not, the Bears are the top team in the division and tied for second in the conference right now. Coming in with a week’s rest against a team mid-collapse is good fortune for them, and it’s probably time to take Chicago seriously. Or Mitchell Trubisky will fall back to reality and throw seven interceptions. Cardinals (1-4) at Vikings (2-2-1) — 1 p.m. ET (FOX)Root for: CardinalsArizona looks absolutely horrible, but they took the Bears to the brink a couple of weeks ago. Minnesota has been one of the most inconsistent teams this season, so it’s impossible to just assume this will be a win here, even if they’re 10-point favorites this week.49ers (1-4) at Packers (2-2-1) — Monday, 8:20 p.m. ET (ESPN)Root for: 49ersWhile it’s crappy that each NFC North team is playing someone with a worse record than them, the good news is that a win for their opponents would be relatively harmless for the Lions. Arizona and San Francisco won’t be making a push for the playoffs this year, and a win for either would also help the Lions’ chances at a higher draft pick, should the season go south quickly. The restBuccaneers (2-2) vs. Falcons (1-4) — 1 p.m. ET (FOX)Root for: BuccaneersNormally Youth Frank Ragnow Jersey , it would make sense to root for the team with the better record here, but I want the Falcons buried for good. A 1-5 hole would be too much for Matt Ryan to pull that team out from, and I just don’t believe in the Bucs at all. Give them another week to be delusionally happy, and then watch them lose to the Browns the following week. Seahawks (2-3) vs. Raiders (1-4) — 1 p.m. ET (FOX)Root for: RaidersWe’ve long declared the Seahawks no longer a thing, with the Legion of Boom thoroughly disbanded, but Seattle has been counted out in October before and have figured things out by winter. They don’t look quite as bad as some expected them too, and while they’ll never catch the Rams this year, a Wild Card spot isn’t out of the question. AFC over NFC, always. Panthers (3-1) at Washington (2-2) — 1 p.m. ET (FOX)Root for: Washington This is a tricky one, but I’m pulling for Washington here for a few reason. First, I don’t think a Wild Card spot will come out of the NFC East, so I’m fine with just handing the division to Washington. The Eagles and Cowboys don’t look good enough to be a 10 or 11-win team this year, and the Giants are dysfunctional as ever. However, there’s a really good chance the NFC South produces a couple of playoff teams, and the Panthers are a prime candidate. A loss here for Carolina would be huge, because it’s a conference loss Youth Ziggy Ansah Jersey , too—a big tie-breaking factor.Rams (5-0) at Broncos (2-3) — 4:05 p.m. ET (FOX)Root for: BroncosAFC over NFC. The only reason to root for the Rams is if you have rightfully picked them for Survivor Football this week. Jaguars (3-2) at Cowboys (2-3) — 4:25 p.m. ET (CBS)Root for: JaguarsAFC over NFC, plus the Cowboys have that dang tiebreaker over the Lions now. Root for the Jaguars for the Lions’ sake, and for humanity’s sake. You could power the world with the schadenfreude gained from a single camera shot of a visibly irritated Jerry Jones in his fancy suite. Who cares?Steelers at BengalsChargers at BrownsColts at JetsBills at TexansRavens at TitansChiefs at PatriotsIf all goes accoridng to plan...Here’s what the standings would look like if everything somehow fell in the Lions’ favor this week, starting with the division.NFC NorthBears (3-2)Packers (2-3-1)Vikings (2-3-1)Lions (2-3)Technically, the Lions can’t get out of the basement this week, as a tie counts as a half-win in the standings. However, being a single game out of first place after six weeks is a pretty good place to be for Detroit, considering their awful 0-2 start. NFC standings:1. Rams (5-1)2. Saints (4-1)t-3. Bears (3-2)t-3. Panthers (3-2)t-3. Washington (3-2)t-3. Buccaneers (3-2)7. Eagles (3-3)t-8. Packers (2-3-1)t-8. Vikings (2-3-1)10. Lions (2-3)t-11. Seahawks (2-4)t-11. Cowboys (2-4)t-11. Cardinals (2-4)t-11. 49ers (2-4)As you can see, it’s still not going to be an extremely rosy picture of the Lions coming out of this week, even if everything falls in their favor. If Detroit wants to make a serious run at this conference, they need to do one, simple thing: Win.

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