With a 5-1 record through their first six games of the season, the Detroit Lions are off to a blazing-fast start to the 2023 campaign, and a big reason for their success has been the high level of play they’ve received from some of their rookies.
Tight end Sam LaPorta was selected by the Lions in the second of the 2023 NFL Draft earlier this year, and so far this season, he’s been able to make a big impact for the team.
In six games, the former Iowa tight end has hauled in 29 passes for 325 yards and three touchdowns.
NFL Media’s Brian Baldinger recently revealed that he believes LaPorta has been one of the five best rookies in the NFL so far this season.
“He leads all tight ends in receiving yards right now. He’s got three touchdowns, tied for the lead there. I mean what a start for Sam LaPorta.”
— Detroit Lions (@Lions) October 18, 2023
Detroit took a big risk last year when they traded longtime tight end T.J. Hockenson in the middle of the season to the Minnesota Vikings.
But Hockenson was nearing the opportunity to get a contract extension, so instead of paying him, the Lions moved on and replaced him with a much cheaper and potentially better tight end in LaPorta.
At 5-1 through the first six games this season, Detroit and their rookie tight end have emerged as a legitimate contender in the NFC.
There are still 12 weeks of games left to be played during the 2023 campaign, but the Lions appear to be on their way to making the playoffs this season for the first time since 2016.
Next on the schedule for Detroit is a tough Week 7 matchup on the road against the Baltimore Ravens.NEXT: Rich Eisen Admits He 'Loves' To Watch 1 NFC Team