Detroit Lions fans were understandably taking a wait and see approach with Penei Sewell after an up and down preseason, but it appears as if patience will remain a virtue that will pay off with regards to the offensive tackle.
Pressed into perhaps uncomfortable duty in Week 1 given an untimely injury to Taylor Decker, Sewell moved over to left tackle and did so relatively well. It was a solid debut for Sewell all things considered given the fact that the Lions were taking on a tough defensive line.
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In spite of all the positivity, Sewell himself remains his harshest critic. After keeping his head above water well, Sewell was asked after the game on September 12 about the debut and admitted first to the things he feels he has to improve on the field.
“It was alright. I got to get better on a couple things, my hands are out of whack. Pad level came too high on a couple, so got to go back to the drawing board and get better for next week,” he told the media.
Specifically, though, Sewell did admit to a level of comfort playing left tackle, his natural position in college. As he said, there were no other choices given the situation.
“I felt comfortable at left. There was no other choice. I was going to play it come game time so I had to be ready,” Sewell said.
Whatever the Lions ask Sewell to do, it’s clear he’s going to get it done to the best of his abilities. Along the way, it appears he even impressed some important folks.
Analyst Proclaims Penei Sewell ‘Left Tackle’ for Lions
The Lions had to move Sewell over in an emergency to left tackle, his natural position in college. According to former offensive lineman and analyst Geoff Schwartz, they may have found something. After a mere quarter played out for Sewell, Schwartz had seen enough to say that he believed the team had their new left tackle of the future in the former Oregon Duck.
What the Lions decide to do with Sewell will remain a question, because the team does have Taylor Decker entrenched on the left side, and Decker just signed an extension with Detroit last year and played well in 2020. Decker has only played the left side since being picked by Detroit in the 2016 NFL draft, so whether or nor he would move at this stage of his career remains to be seen. It is an interesting thought to remember nevertheless, though.
Nick Bosa Praises Sewell’s Play
Most of the afternoon, Sewell did a great job in facing off against Nick Bosa, one of the premiere talents in the league in terms of pass rush. It was a big battle for the rookie considering the talent of Bosa, and to say Sewell exceeded expectations in his debut would be more than a bit of an understatement. Bosa himself saw that and admitted as much, as Will Burchfield of CBS Detroit tweeted after the game. As the Pro Bowler said, he thinks Sewell has a bright future in the league.
To catch Bosa’s attention is noteworthy for Sewell, and it will be interesting to see how he does and how long Decker is out. After one week, though, it’s clear Sewell is not out of place whatsoever in the NFL.