As part of our season wrap-up series, we are going to examine how each player on the roster performed in 2012. Next up is our look at the Detroit Lions' wide receivers.
Calvin Johnson - 16 games (16 starts) | 122 receptions, 1,964 yards, 5 TD | 3 lost fumbles
What else can really be said about Johnson's season at this point? He broke Jerry Rice's single-season receiving record in only 15 games and nearly got to the 2,000-yard mark. He actually got off to a bit of a slow start in 2012 thanks in part to various injuries, but once he turned his game up, defenses felt the wrath of Megatron. He actually did struggle to find the end zone on a regular basis, but that was partly because he was tackled inside the 5-yard line on numerous occasions, meaning he still set up several Lions touchdowns.
Nate Burleson (finished season on IR) - 6 games (5 starts) | 27 receptions, 240 yards, 2 TD | 8 carries, 48 yards, 0 TD | 0 lost fumbles
Burleson was lost for the season after he broke his leg during a Monday night game against the Chicago Bears. The Lions not only lost their first receiver to a season-ending injury, but they lost his leadership as well. At the time, this didn't necessarily seem like a huge loss on the field thanks to the emergence of the next player on this list, but in the long run, the Lions definitely missed Burleson.
Ryan Broyles (finished season on IR) - 10 games (3 starts) | 22 receptions, 310 yards, 2 TD | 0 lost fumbles
Broyles didn't do much of anything at the start of the season. He was still getting caught up since he missed much of training camp while recovering from a torn left ACL, but once he did get up to speed, he showed why the Lions made him a second-round pick last year. Broyles really did an excellent job of getting open and catching passes, and he immediately had a connection with Matthew Stafford. Unfortunately, just as he was really starting to heat up, Broyles suffered a torn right ACL. This ended his season early and once again puts his status for the start of next season up in the air.
Titus Young (finished season on IR) - 10 games (8 starts) | 33 receptions, 383 yards, 4 TD | 2 carries, 16 yards, 0 TD | 0 lost fumbles
Young was expected to have a breakout season in 2012, but that was not what ended up happening. His play was very inconsistent through the first 10 games, as he only really had a couple of solid performances. What's more, his behavior was deplorable. He allegedly purposely lined up incorrectly at one point, which got him sent home by the team. He returned a week later only to be sent home again and put on injured reserve with a knee injury. His future with the Lions is now unclear, as the team may decide to simply release him at some point in the offseason.
Kris Durham - 4 games (3 starts) | 8 receptions, 125 yards, 1 TD | 0 lost fumbles
Durham was activated from the practice squad after the Lions lost Broyles and Young, and he performed quite well at times. His lack of experience was evident at other times, but Durham showed some solid potential. His play down the stretch will likely earn him a shot at making the 53-man roster next season.
Mike Thomas - 9 games (1 start) | 5 receptions, 28 yards, 1 TD | 6 carries, 58 yards, 0 TD | 0 lost fumbles (note: stats are only from his time with Lions)
The Lions acquired Thomas from the Jacksonville Jaguars right before the trade deadline, but he really wasn't given much of a chance to produce for the Lions, as he only had 5 catches and 6 carries. Thomas seems to be in the Lions' future plans, but I certainly hope they get more out of him in 2013 than they did in 2012.
Brian Robiskie - 6 games (0 starts) | 4 receptions, 44 yards, 1 TD | 0 lost fumbles
Robiskie was added to provide extra depth at wide receiver and wasn't much of a factor in the Lions offense. Assuming Burleson and Broyles both return, Robiskie will probably be pushed off the 53-man roster next season.
Kassim Osgood - 16 games (0 starts) | 0 receptions, 0 yards, 0 TD | 0 lost fumbles
As you can see by his stats, Osgood didn't do anything at wide receiver for the Lions. He was signed strictly to play special teams, and that's exactly what he did.
Previously: Quarterback, running back
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