Which Detroit Lions' Player is Under the Most Pressure to Perform in 2013?

By Andrew Fisher
USA Today Sports

To say that there’s a lot riding on the Detroit Lions‘ 2013 season, would be an understatement. Coming off a season where much was expected but nothing went right, the Lions have to deliver this year, or heads will begin to roll.

If you’re talking hot seat in Detroit, head coach Jim Schwartz is on it, in a big way. I don’t there’s a whole lot of debate that Schwartz is coaching for his job in 2013. But outside of the head coach, which Lions’ player is under the most pressure to perform?

An easy answer would be – Reggie Bush. The free agent running back inked a four-year deal to bring his talents to Detroit just a few months back, and with the signing, comes more expectations for the Lions. It’s hard to imagine the logic that just one star player, can take a last place team back to playoff contention, but that’s what many fans are expecting from Bush.

He very well could be the missing link in Detroit, but I don’t think he’s going to have a ton of pressure on him in year one. Expectations are no doubt going to be extremely high for the RB/WR, but he won’t have the weight of the team on his shoulders. Bush is another piece to the puzzle, not the piece that success hinges on.

I believe the Lions’ defense is under the most pressure to perform in 2013, and more specifically, Ndamukong Suh. With the departures of Cliff Avril and Kyle Vanden Bosch, Suh is now the clear leader of the Lions-D. Given his not so great reputation, I think if he performs poorly in 2013, that a ton of criticism will come his way. Suh has proven that he’s got star potential, but he’s yet to really have that breakout season.

So for 2013, the new guy (Bush) gets a pass. The offense as a whole, while under pressure to put up a lot points again, is not going to be the unit that determines the team’s fate. That unit is the defense, which is now led by Suh. Still, expectations for the offense and defense, pale in comparison to what Jim Schwartz must be feeling.


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