Detroit Lions lead the list of top NFL players born in the 2000s

For a stellar example of why the Detroit Lions are engineered for enduring success, just glance at Pro Football Focus’s recent compilation of the best NFL players born in the 2000s.

PFF’s Zoltan Buday highlighted that four Lions players earned spots on his “All 2000s Team.” This impressive lineup includes tight end Sam LaPorta, right tackle Penei Sewell, EDGE Aidan Hutchinson, and defensive lineman Alim McNeill. Notably, no other NFL team had as many players make the list.

LaPorta is emerging from a stellar rookie season, distinguishing himself as one of the NFL’s premier tight ends. He ranked fourth in receptions (86), fifth in receiving yards (889), and led all tight ends in touchdowns (10).

McNeill also enjoyed a breakout year, achieving personal bests with five sacks, six tackles for loss, and ten quarterback hits. Sewell has solidified his status as an elite right tackle over the past few seasons. Hutchinson recorded career highs with 11.5 sacks and 14 tackles for loss in 2023.

The promising aspect for the Lions is that all these players are 24 years old or younger, indicating their potential for further development beyond their impressive 2023 performances. McNeill is the only one not under contract beyond 2024, but it’s likely that Detroit will secure an extension for him before he enters free agency.


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