The Detroit Lions have certainly started their season off on the wrong foot. Dropping two games that could be considered winnable, the team is taking on the New England Patriots in an exciting rendition of Sunday Night Football. With the running game still not working, like at all, the team’s air attack has still been serviceable. And within that service, the team has found a rising star in wide receiver Kenny Golladay.
Through two games, Golladay leads the team in receiving yards and is second in targets and receptions. In his rookie year, Golladay recorded 477 yards on 28 catches. His 13 catches through two games is a promising sign of a budding rapport with Matthew Stafford. Moving forward, Golladay will continue to see targets. If the first two games show any indication, it’s that the Lions will be needing to move down the field in the air.
His debut game last season had him catching two touchdown passes and it seemed like the loss of Calvin Johnson was finally over. Unsurprisingly, that performance was difficult to repeat. After missing five games in the 2017 season due to a hamstring injury, Golladay made some noise as Stafford’s fifth or sixth option in the passing game. His season-high in targets last year was eight. In the first game of the season this year, he was targeted 12 times. Last week, targeted nine times. He’s getting looks to convert first downs, having made 12 catches for first downs on the year, and getting looks downfield.
Golladay himself said that he wanted a breakout season. Quoted in the Detroit Free Press as saying: “I want a breakout season myself. I’m trying to make a whole lot of plays for this team.” Head coach Matt Patricia told reporters after the blowout loss to the New York Jets that Golladay “played at a high level… he showed he can play big and play strong and just compete very hard.”
A healthy Golladay with one year of experience under his belt can help make the Lions passing game a nightmare for opposing teams. He and Marvin Jones cover the deep threat as Golden Tate can take care of the route running. That’s not to mention the receiving coming out of the backfield with Theo Riddick. If the team can establish any sort of running threat on the ground, the passing game should be very beneficial for Golladay and company.