The Lions had a historic playoff victory, ending a 32-year drought with a wild-card win over the Rams. Struggles on both sides of the ball contributed to their collapse in the NFC Championship, but chief among them were issues in the run game, with just 32 of their 182 rushing yards in the second half. With the addition of Kevin Zeitler, the Lions will look to improve their run game against defensive tactics aimed at stifling their ground attack.  

Below the CBS Sports Fantasy staff will take a look into the Lions' entire team outlook including changes to the top of the depth chart that matter for Fantasy, a burning question for Fantasy Football managers that needs to be answered, a review of their draft class, strength of schedule, and individual player outlooks for all of the notable Lions players who may end up on your Fantasy rosters.

Lions 2024 lineup changes

1/1/2024Week 1 2024 (proj)
QBJared GoffJared Goff
RBJahmyr GibbsJahmyr Gibbs
WRAmon-Ra St. BrownAmon-Ra St. Brown
WRJameson WilliamsJameson Williams
WRJosh ReynoldsKalif Raymond
TESam LaPortaSam LaPorta

Burning question: Can Jameson Williams become a viable No. 2 option?

Williams is exceptionally talented but has not put up the numbers his skill set suggests he should produce. He's got rare speed at the position and shows the ability to separate early in his routes. He's provided glimpses of the type of player he could become with more targets, but whether he receives an increased workload this season remains to be seen. In 12 games last season, Williams was targeted just 42 times. Meanwhile, Amon-Ra St. Brown was targeted 164 times last season and came up with 119 receptions for 1,515 yards and 10 touchdowns. Williams can be a 1,000-yard receiver as well. If he can stay on the field and develop chemistry with Jared Goff, he makes for the perfect complement to St. Brown. With his ability to take the top off defenses, the Lions could be more of a threat this season if Williams can take his game to the next level.

2024 NFL Draft class

124Terrion ArnoldCBAlabama
261Ennis RakestrawCBMissouri
4126Giovanni ManuOLBritish Columbia
4132Sione VakiSUtah
6189Mekhi WingoDTLSU
6210Christian MahoganyOLBoston Col.

Lions 2024 schedule

1Sep 8, 2024vsL.A. Rams8:20 pmNBCFord Field
2Sep 15, 2024vsTampa Bay1:00 pmFOXFord Field
3Sep 22, 2024@Arizona4:25 pmFOXState Farm Stadium
4Sep 30, 2024vsSeattle8:15 pmABCFord Field
6Oct 13, 2024@Dallas4:25 pmFOXAT&T Stadium
7Oct 20, 2024@Minnesota1:00 pmFOXU.S. Bank Stadium
8Oct 27, 2024vsTennessee1:00 pmFOXFord Field
9Nov 3, 2024@Green Bay4:25 pmFOXLambeau Field
10Nov 10, 2024@Houston8:20 pmNBCNRG Stadium
11Nov 17, 2024vsJacksonville1:00 pmCBSFord Field
12Nov 24, 2024@Indianapolis1:00 pmFOXLucas Oil Stadium
13Nov 28, 2024vsChicago12:30 pmCBSFord Field
14Dec 5, 2024vsGreen Bay8:15 pmAMZNFord Field
15Dec 15, 2024vsBuffalo4:25 pmCBSFord Field
16Dec 22, 2024@Chicago1:00 pmFOXSoldier Field
17Dec 30, 2024@San Francisco8:15 pmABCLevi's Stadium
18Jan 5, 2025vsMinnesotaTBAFord Field

Lions 2024 player outlooks

By Jamey Eisenberg and CBS Fantasy staff

QB Jared Goff

Goff will never fall under the category of a league-winning Fantasy quarterback, but he can be a serviceable starter. He's worth drafting with a late-round pick in all one-quarterback leagues and a mid-round selection in Superflex and two-quarterback formats. For the second year in a row, Goff averaged at least 20.1 Fantasy points per game. He's passed for at least 4,438 yards and 29 touchdowns in each of the past two seasons, and there's a good chance he should finish in that range again in 2024. He has solid weapons in Amon-Ra St. Brown, Sam LaPorta, Jameson Williams, Jahmyr Gibbs and David Montgomery, one of the best offensive lines in the NFL, and Detroit kept play caller Ben Johnson this season, which is a huge plus. Goff is an excellent Fantasy quarterback to wait for on Draft Day in all leagues.  

QB Hendon Hooker

Hooker will be the No. 2 quarterback in Detroit this season behind Jared Goff, but Hooker has minimal Fantasy value in that role. He's not worth drafting in the majority of leagues. Hooker did not appear in a game in his rookie season in 2023, and Goff appeared in every game for the Lions last year. Unless Goff gets hurt, don't expect Hooker to contribute much this season. At best, you can add Hooker off waivers during the year.

RB Jahmyr Gibbs

Gibbs enters his sophomore campaign looking to build off his productive rookie season in 2023. We like Gibbs as a No. 1 running back in all leagues, and he's worth drafting toward the end of Round 1. As a rookie, Gibbs was a star, averaging 16.1 PPR points per game, including six outings with at least 21.5 PPR points in his final 11 contests. Only seven running backs saw more targets than Gibbs' 71, and his 52 catches were tied for the ninth-most at the position. General manager Brad Holmes said in May that Gibbs should "see more of the load" this season, which could come at the expense of David Montgomery, who out-carried Gibbs 219-182. Even if Montgomery continues to get more carries than Gibbs, he should still have the chance for 250-plus total touches. And Gibbs scored 11 total touchdowns in 2023 (10 rushing). Gibbs should have the chance for another big year in 2024.  

RB David Montgomery

Montgomery might be taking more of a backseat to Jahmyr Gibbs this season based on what general manager Brad Holmes said in May, but Montgomery remains a solid No. 2 running back in all leagues. He's worth drafting as early as Round 6 in most formats. Holmes said that Gibbs should "see more of the load" this season, which could come at the expense of Montgomery, who out-carried Gibbs 219-182 in 2023. Still, we see Montgomery getting close to 200 total touches (he had 16 receptions on 24 targets), and Montgomery will continue to be a factor in the end zone. He scored 13 rushing touchdowns last season, and the Lions will continue to give Montgomery chances to score. He's better in non- and half-PPR leagues than PPR, but Montgomery is still a quality No. 2 Fantasy option in all formats.  

RB Craig Reynolds

Reynolds is the No. 3 running back for the Lions this season behind Jahmyr Gibbs and David Montgomery, but Reynolds has minimal Fantasy value in that role. Reynolds is not worth drafting in the majority of leagues. Reynolds would only be worth adding off waivers if something happened to Gibbs or Montgomery. Reynolds appeared in 16 games last year, rushing 41 times for 179 yards and one touchdown. He also caught all five of his targets for 47 yards. He likely won't get more touches than that if Gibbs and Montgomery remain healthy all year.

RB Sione Vaki

The Lions selected Vaki in the fourth round of the NFL Draft from Utah, and the converted cornerback will add depth in Detroit's backfield. Vaki is not worth drafting in most redraft leagues, and he's a late-round flier at best in rookie-only drafts for Dynasty leagues. In 2023 at Utah, Vaki had 42 carries for 317 yards and two touchdowns and 11 catches for 203 yards. He could play a role on special teams as a return man, but he's unlikely to get many touches on offense if everyone is healthy. At best, you can add Vaki off waivers during the season.

WR Amon-Ra St. Brown

St. Brown has established himself as one of the best receivers in the NFL, and he's worth drafting in Round 1 in all leagues. He should be considered a top-five wide receiver this year along with CeeDee Lamb, Tyreek Hill, Justin Jefferson and Ja'Marr Chase, and St. Brown can get drafted as high as No. 6 overall this season. In 2023, St. Brown averaged a career-high 20.7 PPR points per game, and he's scored at least 16.7 PPR points per game in each of the past two seasons. Over that span, St. Brown has averaged 155 targets, 113 catches, 1,338 yards and eight touchdowns, and he earned a huge raise this offseason with a four-year extension for $120 million, including $77 million guaranteed. Jared Goff should continue to lean on St. Brown in 2024, and he's a great player to select first on your Fantasy roster.

WR Jameson Williams

Williams is worth drafting as a sleeper this season with a mid-round pick, and he could finally perform at a high level in his third year in the NFL. The first two seasons of his career have been frustrating. He was limited to six games in his rookie campaign following a torn ACL in his final collegiate game at Alabama. And he started his second year dealing with a suspension for gambling. The result has been a combined 95.4 PPR points in two years, but now is his time to shine. With Josh Reynolds gone, Williams is locked into a starting role, and Reynolds leaves behind 64 targets. Hopefully, Williams gets most of those chances from Jared Goff, and Williams could emerge as a top-30 Fantasy receiver this year. We recommend drafting Williams around pick 100 overall, and he will hopefully turn into a weekly starter in three-receiver leagues.  

WR Kalif Raymond

Raymond has the chance to be the No. 3 receiver for the Lions this year, and he could be worth a late-round pick in deep Fantasy leagues. Raymond is behind Amon-Ra St. Brown and Jameson Williams on the depth chart, but Raymond also has to contend with Sam LaPorta and Jahmyr Gibbs for targets. There are 64 vacated targets with Josh Reynolds (Denver) gone in Detroit, but Raymond has a lot to prove before Fantasy managers can trust him. He's never averaged more than 8.3 PPR points per game in nine seasons with the Lions, Titans, Giants and Broncos. At best, add Raymond off of the waiver wire during the year.

WR Donovan Peoples-Jones

Peoples-Jones is expected to be the No. 4 receiver in Detroit this season, but he has minimal Fantasy value in that role. He's not worth drafting in the majority of leagues. Peoples-Jones will open the season behind Amon-Ra St. Brown, Jameson Williams and Kalif Raymond, but Peoples-Jones also has to contend with Sam LaPorta and Jahmyr Gibbs earning targets as well. It will be hard for Peoples-Jones to be Fantasy relevant on a consistent basis when everyone is healthy, but he could become a waiver wire option if an injury were to occur. If that scenario unfolds then just add Peoples-Jones off the waiver wire during the season.

TE Sam LaPorta

LaPorta was one of the biggest breakouts in 2023 as a rookie when he averaged 14.1 PPR points per game. He enters this season with the chance to be the No. 1 Fantasy tight end on Draft Day, and he's worth drafting toward the end of Round 2 or beginning of Round 3 in all leagues. It will come down to if LaPorta goes ahead of guys like Travis Kelce, Mark Andrews or Trey McBride, and we like LaPorta first of that group, slightly ahead of Kelce. LaPorta should remain a focal point for Jared Goff this season in Ben Johnson's offense, and LaPorta was one of seven players to score at least 10 touchdowns in 2023. He should continue to improve heading into his second year in the NFL, and LaPorta has the chance to be the No. 1 tight end in Fantasy for many years to come.

K Michael Badgley

Badgley will open the season as the kicker for the Lions, and he should be considered a No. 2 Fantasy option heading into the year. He could become a waiver wire addition as the season goes on. Badgley spent much of 2023 on Detroit's practice squad before eventually replacing a struggling Riley Patterson for the final four games of the regular season and the playoffs. Badgley converted each of his seven field-goal attempts and 24 of 26 PATs after taking over. The Lions have a high-powered offense, so Badgley could get plenty of scoring chances, making him a potentially attractive Fantasy asset during the year.  

Lions DST

Detroit's defense will look a little different this season with new additions to the secondary and pass rush, and that should help the Lions DST improve as a Fantasy asset. Detroit added plenty of help to the secondary with veteran cornerbacks Carlton Davis III and Amik Robertson and the drafting of cornerbacks Terrion Arnold and Ennis Rakestraw Jr. with the Lions' first two picks in the NFL Draft. D.J. Reader and Marcus Davenport were also added to the defensive line, and that's a big plus to Detroit's defense helping Aidan Hutchinson attack the quarterback. The Lions DST should be considered a No. 2 Fantasy option to open the season, but it could be a waiver-wire addition during the year if the unit starts out playing well.