Nevin Lawson is favorite to start at cornerback for Lions

Detroit Lions cornerback Nevin Lawson is the favorite to start opposite Darius Slay.

What It Means:

Despite the retirement of Rashean Mathis, the Lions did not add a starting-caliber corner in free agency or the draft. That leaves Lawson as the de facto option opposite Slay. Lawson struggled in nine starts last year, but he has a fourth-round pedigree and is reportedly well-liked within the organization. He should be given every chance to win the starting job.

The Lions' defense had a huge production downturn in 2015, ranking 26th in Adjusted Defensive Net Expected Points (NEP) per play, 25th in Adjusted Defensive Passing NEP per play and 22nd in Adjusted Rushing NEP per play. Lawson played in 15 games last year, totaling 47 tackles and 7 passes defensed. He's a sleeper Individual Defensive Player (IDP) option in cornerback-specific leagues.