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NFL preseason preview: Detroit Lions v. Cleveland Browns

Ever Detroit Lions fans will keep their eye out for Johnny Manziel in this game.
Ever Detroit Lions fans will keep their eye out for Johnny Manziel in this game.
Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images

Detroit Lions football is back, people! Sure, the games won't count for another month or so, but it's something. It has been a largely quiet offseason for the Lions, Ndamukong Suh contract "concerns" aside, but now it is time to see the team in action. The team opens its preseason at home with a game against the Cleveland Browns. Also, I wish Detroit's preseason games counted so bad. I mean, Cleveland, Oakland, Jacksonville, and Buffalo? Oh, what a schedule that'd be!

Anyway, as always, we can't read too much into the preseason, particularly game one. So let us not overreact when the time comes for reactions. Of course, most of the focus on this game will be on the Browns' current backup quarterback, a gentleman named Johnny Manziel that tends to get people enthused one way or another. He's going to get a chance to go up against the Lions' backup secondary. That could get ugly, but it also won't mean much.

The Lions have a new head coach, and two new coordinators, which mean two new schemes. As such, this is the most interesting preseason for Detroit since Matthew Stafford's first preseason game. This offense has a load of talent, but how will it look under its new parameters? Having said that, first round pick Eric Ebron may not play in this game, so we won't get a chance to see him.

Obviously, there are more questions on defense for the Lions, particularly in the secondary. I'd like to see the Lions get real pressure on Cleveland's quarterbacks, and I'd like to see the cornerbacks look sharp, particular Darius Slay. Then, there is the matter of the kicking battle in Detroit. We'll get some answers on that.

The results don't matter in this game, but the process does, so hopefully the Lions look sharp, a couple of backups surprise, and nobody gets hurt. Business as usual. The game kicks off on Saturday at 7:30. Lions football! Bring on the Jim Caldwell Era, even if it is not an era I am particularly enthused about.