Detroit Lions' backup quarterback Tim Boyle now has three starts to his name after replacing Jared Goff for the past two games. Boyle’s game, to put it nicely, has been inconsistent. Against the Atlanta Falcons, he made a critical mistake, throwing a game-losing interception at the opponent’s 9-yard line. This past week against the Seattle Seahawks, Boyle was inaccurate in the first half and threw three interceptions in the second half. That isn’t to say there wasn’t anything good about Boyle’s performance—he completed over 70 percent of his passes in Atlanta and had a respectable 7.1 yards per attempt in Seattle—but it is clear he’s a work in progress.
However, head coach Dan Campbell told reporters on Monday that he has actually seen plenty of promising things from Boyle in his three games this season.
“I thought he read coverages pretty good. I thought he made some really good throws,” Campbell said. “It’s kind of like what you guys saw, there were ups and downs. It was inconsistent.”
Boyle only signed a one-year deal with Detroit, so the Lions will face a decision if they want the third-year quarterback to compete for a backup spot again next year. But if you were to read between the tea leaves, it sure sounds like Campbell thinks there’s more to Boyle that we haven’t seen quite yet.
“It’s easy to look at it and three interceptions and I know, but there is something about this guy and I think he’s going to get better. I think these reps are invaluable for him,” Campbell said.
Overall for the season, Boyle has completed 61-of-94 passes for 526 yards (5.6 Y/A), three touchdowns, and six interceptions. Those turnover numbers are certainly a concern—especially since Boyle threw just one touchdown and 13 interceptions at UConn. However, Campbell again reiterated that the mistakes he’s making are learning experiences, and the positives can’t be ignored.
“I’m not discouraged, I’m not,” Campbell said. “He knows better than anybody, he’s got to learn from this and he’s got to cut those things out. But, there is some stuff in there that I’m pretty encouraged by.”
Dave Birkett has more on the situation, including an update on who may start in Sunday’s finale against the Green Bay Packers. Campbell called Goff 50-50 to play this week, while Goff told 97.1 The Ticket he’s a little more hopeful to play this week.
- The Lions got a bit of good news on Tuesday. Wide receiver Kalif Raymond was removed from the reserve/COVID-19 list per the transaction wire. He missed just one game.
- Detroit lost one of their scouts this week, as Bird Sherrill—who was hired by the Lions in 2016—has been hired as the Florida Gators’ Director of College Personnel.
- Justin Rogers’ weekly film breakdown is always worth a read. This week’s topic: how the Lions’ defense got obliterated by Seattle. If you can stomach watching some of those plays again, it’s worth it.
- Presenting without comment:
Wow, Stafford really finished dead on Goff's 2017/2018 17 week seasons. That is uncanny pic.twitter.com/JUKiKjBdj1— Computer Cowboy (@benbbaldwin) January 4, 2022
- Amon-Ra St. Brown was nominated for Rookie of the Week for the fourth time in five weeks. Early on Tuesday, we got a groundswell of support to get him in the lead for voting, but it appears Ja’Marr Chase has retaken the lead (and rightfully so, if we’re being honest). But if you want to make another push, you can vote for him here.
- Many came away discouraged with Michigan edge defender, and top NFL Draft prospect, Aidan Hutchinson from his performance in the college football playoffs. However, a few people came to Hutchinson’s defense. The Athletic’s Dane Brugler had this to say:
Hot take: Aidan Hutchinson played pretty well vs. UGA, he just wasn’t dominant bc they (smartly) gave him the Bosa treatment.— Dane Brugler (@dpbrugler) January 3, 2022
A lot of quick game to negate the pass rush. When the QB did drop back, there was a RB/TE chipping #97 constantly. Just a well-executed gameplan by UGA. pic.twitter.com/UMENB0wgqe
Meanwhile, Birkett re-watched the entire game and unloaded his notebook from Hutchinson’s performance ($). His conclusion: “anyone who thinks Hutchinson struggled Friday or is no longer worthy of a top pick wasn’t paying attention.”