clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Detroit Lions mailbag: Is it too early to worry about T.J. Hockenson, DJ Chark?

Two Lions weapons have been curiously quiet through the first couple games. Not a big deal, or a creeping concern?

Washington Commanders v Detroit Lions Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

It feels a bit nitpicky to start complaining about a Detroit Lions offense that is tied for second in the league in points scored. You know what? It doesn’t feel nitpicky. It is nitpicky.

But indulge us for a minute here: just because something is going right doesn’t mean it’s going as well as it should be.

And for as great as the offense has looked through the first two games of the season, it’s undeniable that Detroit left some points on the field in both games. In the first, it may have cost them a win. In the second, it undoubtedly cost them some breathing room in the final two quarters.

No one is expecting perfection, but there are certainly some glaring issues that need to be cleaned up. I’ll spare y’all the tired Jared Goff conversation, and instead turn to two of his pass catchers.

In our latest episode of the Mid-week Mailbag, myself and Ryan Mathews were asked about the slow starts by both DJ Chark and T.J. Hockenson. Chark was shut out in the Washington Commanders game after catching just four passes for 52 yards and a score in the opener. Hockenson has seven catches but for just 64 yards.

On one hand, with the Lions’ growing array of weapons—and thriving run game—these guys are naturally going to be hit-or-miss on a week-to-week basis. There’s just not enough touches to go around. That’s the nature of the game, and I’m sure neither player is currently holding any grievances over that.

On the other hand, Hockenson has not looked particularly good. He’s had at least two drops thus far, and his blocking doesn’t seem to have made any noticeable progress. Chark came into training camp and seemed to immediately connect with Goff, bringing hope that the deep ball was going to be unleashed this year. But the two have only connected on a single pass more than 15 yards downfield thus far.

We discuss our level of concern on both players on this week’s podcast. Other topics include:

  • Are analysts ranking the Lions too high in power rankings?
  • How much confidence was gained after watching the Eagles dominate the Vikings?
  • Initial thoughts on Julian Okwara’s first game of 2022
  • Our favorite advanced metrics
  • What will the team look like when their injured players (Jerry Jacobs, Josh Paschal, Romeo Okwara, Jameson Williams) come back, and when can we expect them back?
  • What’s the source of the Lions’ red zone success?

Check out the entire podcast here:

Subscribe to the PODcast on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, or iHeartRadio. Follow Pride Of Detroit on Twitch to get notified when we record the PODcast live and chat with us. Video replays are available on Twitch and highlights can be founded on YouTube.

NEW: Join Pride of Detroit Direct

Jeremy Reisman will drop into your inbox twice a week to provide exclusive, in-depth reporting and insights from Ford Field. Subscribe to go deeper into Lions fandom, and join us on our path to win the Super Bowl.