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Friday, January 21, 2022

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    Detroit Lions rookie Derrick Barnes ‘deserves a shot’ at ILB

    The Detroit Lions could be turning to a rookie to inject some new life into their 31st-ranked scoring defense.

    Lions coach Dan Campbell indicated Tuesday that linebacker Derrick Barnes will see his most extensive action of the season in this week’s game against the Baltimore Ravens.

    A fourth-round pick out of Purdue, Barnes has played five defensive snaps in the Lions’ first two games, with all of them coming as a temporary injury fill-in for Jamie Collins in a Week 1 loss to the San Francisco 49ers.

    BUY IN ON BARNES’ STOCK: Won’t be long until rookie Derrick Barnes plays more

    Lions linebacker Derrick Barnes works out during rookie minicamp in Allen Park on Sunday, May 16, 2021.

    Last week, Barnes played only on special teams against the Green Bay Packers.

    Collins and fellow starting inside linebacker Alex Anzalone had rough showings against the Packers. Anzalone made a team-high 10 tackles, but also drew a defensive holding penalty on first-and-20 and missed two tackles.

    Both he and Collins (five tackles, one for loss) allowed passing touchdowns.

    “Alex wasn’t perfect but I thought he was all over the field and made a lot plays.” Campbell said. “I thought he played with a lot of energy, I think he was spot on with his calls, and look, he’s high effort. He’s smart, he’s kind if what we’re about here, and so I like him where he was at.

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