NFC North beat writers were asked about the Lions run game and the possibility of a balanced offense:
Rob Demovsky: In short, no, unless the return of Ameer Abdullah from the foot injury that ruined his 2016 season is a game-changer or Matt Asiata suddenly becomes something more than just the complementary piece he was in Minnesota. Otherwise, it looks a lot like the status quo for the Lions' offense, which will once again rely heavily on quarterback Matthew Stafford.
That's not a bad thing given his ability to get on a hot streak as he showed last season. The good news is he has an upgraded offensive line led by former Packers Pro Bowl guard T.J. Lang to protect him.
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All three beat writers who write for opponents of the Lions in the NFC North seemed to agree the Lions will need to rely on Stafford again this season, and the run game's current status won't give the team balance on offense. No one thinks Abdullah is a sure thing, but if he can stay healthy he'll obviously give the run game a little boost.