In preparing for the Lions, the toughness of their dynamic running back pair has stood out to Jets Pro Bowl LB C.J. Mosley.
"You have got to respect those guys' tough running styles," Mosley said. "And that they pride themselves on running the ball well."
The Lions (6-7) visit MetLife on Sunday in Week 15 with the No. 11 ranked rushing attack averaging 127.5 yards per game and No. 3 in touchdowns (19). The is spearheaded by the RB duo of Jamaal Williams and D'Andre Swift who have combined for 1,281 yards this season.
In his sixth NFL season, Williams is an imposing figure at 6-0, 224 pounds and has been spectacular near the goal lin,e leading the NFL with 14 touchdowns. Williams has averaged 4 yards a rush and has 806 yards on the ground this season.
"For one, he is a bigger running back," Mosley said. "Just at that size, arm tackles are not going to work. When you hit him, he can get those extra yards."
A second-round pick in the 2020 NFL Draft, Swift has been Detroit's change-of-pace back playing as effectively in the passing game as the run, registering 31 receptions for 253 yards and 2 touchdowns. On the ground, Swift averages 5.4 yards per attempt and has 4 touchdowns.
"With those guys, you just got to bring it every play," Mosley said. "One has got the size and Swift is a bit shorter and faster and can get on the edges. So, you got two different styles of runners."
See the top photos from Thursday's practice leading up to the home game against Detroit.
Mosley said thatthe Lions' rushing attack – ranked No. 24 in touchdowns and No. 19 in yards last season – has experienced a turnaround through the efforts of running back coach Duce Staley. Staley, the Eagles running back coach from 2013-20, joined the Lions in 2021 and has stressed tough running.
"I have had some battles with his running backs when he was with the Eagles and when I was with the Ravens," Mosley said. "He is one of those coaches that gets fired up for his players. If you make a hit on that sideline, you are going to hear his voice. So, just that competitiveness he has brought, you understand what kind of style they running he has brought, and I have a lot of respect for it."
With the weather expected to be in the mid-30s, the running game could play a big part in the game. After surrendering over 100 yards rushing in the last 3 games, Mosley expects the Jets' defense to be better against the Lions.
"Not really much to say I mean, we played a tough game this past week in the snow and rain," Mosley said. "…Time to put you chin strap on tight and go play."