News writers Justin Rogers and Bob Wojnowski do their best to remember this is a preseason game, missing the starters, and that it only matters so much. The Detroit News
Detroit — After a second viewing of the Detroit Lions' 31-3 loss to the New England Patriots in the preseason opener for both teams, here's a look at who is trending up and who is trending down coming out of the game.
► Stock down: Guard Kenny Wiggins
The Lions continue to present Wiggins as the front-runner for the vacant starting guard job, but he did nothing to assuage concerns he would be the unit's weak link. Early in the game, he was overpowered by Danny Shelton, leading to a sack. The veteran lineman lost a few more individual matchups in 14 snaps, including getting flagged for a hold.
► Stock up: Guard Joe Dahl
Fresh off a two-year contract extension, Dahl’s steady performance on Thursday suggests he deserves more consideration for the guard job than he’s maybe received to this point. While Detroit's line was surrendering steady amounts of pressure on the evening, the fourth-year veteran out of Washington State wasn’t a noticeable part of the problem.
► Stock up: Running back Ty Johnson
Johnson finished with a modest line, carrying the ball three times for 22 yards. He also had a 13-yarder wiped off the books by Wiggins’ hold. That carry, and a 17-yarder in the second half, showcased the rookie’s advertised quickness to the edge and top gear once he got to the corner of the defense.
► Treading water: Safety Miles Killebrew
There were some real positives for Killebrew, seeing extended playing with the linebacking depth chart depleted by injury. He manned his gap assignments well against the run and wrapped up ball carriers efficiently when opportunities arose. On one occasion, while trying to set an edge, he did get moved rather easily. He also surrendered a touchdown in coverage, getting spun around by rookie receiver Jakobi Meyers.
► Stock down: Offensive tackle Tyrell Crosby
Expectations are high for Crosby this year, coming off a quietly effective rookie campaign as Detroit’s swing backup tackle. With the starters seeing limited action, he played extensively at both left and right tackle and was a key culprit in New England’s pass rush getting home on Detroit’s quarterbacks nine times. Crosby was badly beaten on multiple snaps and also drew a late false start.
► Stock up: Tavon Wilson
The veteran safety took a pay cut this offseason and is on the roster bubble by default due to overcrowding in the safety room, but Wilson showed he’s not going down without a fight. Like Killebrew, Wilson aggressively attacked his run gaps, making several stops in the run game. The biggest disappointment was when he shot into the backfield on a third-and-1, but couldn’t wrap up running back Brandon Bolden, who slipped free for the first down.
► Stock down: Cornerback Amani Oruwariye
The rookie recently worked his way into some first-team reps on the practice field, and he nearly picked off Tom Brady in one of the joint practices, but he was a popular coverage target for the Patriots in this game. Oruwariye allowed the night's first touchdown and was beat several more times in coverage throughout the contest.
► Treading water: Cornerback Dee Virgin
Virgin got called for a blatant pass interference call when he ran into the receiver on a deeper pattern along the sideline, but responded well with a pair of pass breakups, including one in the end zone.
► Stock down: Cornerback Mike Ford
Like Oruwariye, the Patriots routinely picked on Ford, who struggled to stay with his assignments throughout the evening. He also gave up a touchdown to Meyers.
► Stock up: Defensive tackle Darius Kilgo
Prior to exiting with a leg injury late in the first half, Kilgo did a good job maintaining gap integrity on run downs and generating some decent push when rushing the passer. He has a knack for keeping his head up when getting after the quarterback, allowing him to get his hands in the passing lanes. He broke up one pass and nearly batted down a second.