Last year, the Detroit Lions had one of the best receiving threats in the NFL. Kenny Golladay led the NFL in receiving touchdowns (11) and was third in yards per reception (18.3). Marvin Jones Jr. was just behind him with nine touchdowns. Meanwhile, complementary pieces Danny Amendola and Marvin Hall both had career years.
This year, they may be even better.
PFF ranked all 32 teams by their pass catchers—including tight ends and running backs—and the analytics website listed the Detroit Lions sixth on their list.
“Golladay ranks fifth in contested catches since 2017 (49) while Jones ranks eighth (42), and both have top-10 contested-catch rates among qualifiers,” PFF’s Ben Linsey wrote.
But it doesn’t stop there. T.J. Hockenson will be entering his second year in the NFL after his rookie season trailed off following a hot start to the year. And PFF is also a big fan of rookie running back D’Andre Swift when it comes to threats in the receiving game.
“The addition of the best receiving running back in the class—D’Andre Swift—only bolsters the group,” Linsey said.
The only teams PFF had above the Lions:
- Buccaneers: (Chris Godwin, Mike Evans, Rob Gronkowski)
- Chiefs: (Tyreek Hill, Travis Kelce, Sammy Watkins)
- Cowboys: (Amari Cooper, Michael Gallup, CeeDee Lamb)
- Saints: (Michael Thomas, Emmanuel Sanders, Jared Cook, Alvin Kamara)
- Bills: (Stefon Diggs, John Brown, Cole Beasley)
Even better, the Lions are far, far ahead of any other team in the NFC North. The Vikings are the next closest at 24th, the Packers are ranked 26th and the Bears are right behind them at 27th.
Now that Matthew Stafford is healthy, entering the second year under offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell, and has this extremely talented group of pass catchers, he could be in for one hell of a season.