While everyone is excited about the Detroit Lions’ 3-1 start, the return of first-round receiver Jameson Williams has got many—including his teammates—excited about this team taking their offense to another level.
However, coach Dan Campbell downplayed Williams’ return this week against the Carolina Panthers, suggesting that his role will likely be limited if he’s even active at all. That has caused some to express their concern about the team’s confidence level in Williams.
So on the triumphant return of the Midweek Mailbag with myself and Erik Schlitt, we talked a lot about Williams, where his game is currently at, and our confidence level that the former Alabama receiver will eventually get things on track in Detroit.
“He’s actually an ideal player to have against the Carolina defense because they run this shell coverage,” Schlitt said. “And he, with that speed, he can bust that shell open and create opportunities underneath. I have to think that they—even if they’re just running him. Even if they’re just like, ‘40-yard dash, let’s go,’—that has to be in the game plan.”
That said, both Erik and I believe Williams is not in for a role for more than 15-20 snaps based on Campbell’s comments. While on the surface, that’s nothing to really worry about—the Lions have taken all of their returning players along slowly—I personally believe it does speak to how much polish Williams’ game still needs, as we saw in training camp.
“Part of (the coach’s thinking) is, ‘He needs to clean up his game considerably before we can go out there and trust him. We need to be able to trust this guy,” I said. “By saying, ‘We need have him be dependable,’ you’re inadvertently saying, ‘He’s not dependable right now.’”
Here are more topics we talk about on this week’s show:
- Whose success are you more excited to see: Jahmyr Gibbs or Jameson Williams — 10:30 timestamp
- Will the Lions be active at the trade deadline? — 12:45
- Biggest concerns vs. Panthers — 21:10
- Thoughts on Jack Campbell as an edge player? Will it continue? — 24:50
- How will the Lions utilize Tracy Walker and Kerby Joseph together? What does Detroit want out of both safety spots? — 29:15
- Jahmyr Gibbs usage — 36:00
- Why are fans so impatient with rookies? — 41:30
- Which NFC North team will be the biggest threat over the next five years? — 49:50
Check out our show below and make sure to join us live every Tuesday afternoon around Noon on our Twitch page: