Snap observations: Levy's role grows in Lions' loss
East Rutherford, N.J. — In his second game back from injury, DeAndre Levy saw a significant bump in playing time. The Detroit Lions linebacker didn't start the game against the New York Giants, entering the contest on the second series, but finished playing 30 of the team's 64 defensive snaps.
Levy had a productive day, despite the limited role, recording eight tackles. He played 18 snaps last weekend, in the team's win over the Bears. Prior to that, he missed three months with a quad injury and minor knee surgery.
The impact of Levy's increased playing time was fewer snaps for starting middle linebacker Tahir Whitehead. His 72 percent participation on defensive snaps was his lowest of the season.
Here are some additional observations from Sunday's snap count report:
• As expected, rookie Dwayne Washington dominated the running back rotation, more than doubling up the playing time of Zach Zenner, 44 snaps to 18. Veteran Joique Bell was limited to special teams.
• Against the Giants receiver-heavy sets, the Lions leaned heavily on a traditional nickel package. With Quandre Diggs done for the season, and rookie Adairius Barnes waived earlier in the week, recently signed Asa Jackson was thrust into a major role. He played 47 snaps in the loss and had some notable struggles, surrendering an early touchdown pass to Sterling Shepard and a 25-yard completion to Odell Beckham Jr. on a third-and-10 during a fourth-quarter scoring drive.
• Special teams standout Don Carey got in for a defensive series in the first quarter, playing three snaps. It was the first time since late October the Lions used him on defense.
• With cornerback Darius Slay going down in the first half with a hamstring injury, Johnson Bademosi answered the bell, playing 42 snaps. After playing a significant role earlier in the season, while Slay and Nevin Lawson battled injury/illness, Bademosi had been exclusively working on special teams the past four games.