Wide receiver is known to be one of the most difficult positions to succeed at in the NFL. Oftentimes, great wide receivers from College Football just can’t seem to make it in the big league. Playing against defenders who are bigger, stronger and faster, along with defensive schemes. It’s a very difficult position to play and have success. You can usually tell the players that are going to succeed early and they often make that leap in the 2nd year, as we saw with Justin Jefferson and Tee Higgins, most recently. Amon-Ra St. Brown is a talented wide receiver, who came out of USC after 3 middling seasons with just 16 TDs, but has adapted to the next level really well, I think his 2nd season is going to be a big jump.
In his first season he racked up 90 catches for 912 yards which included 5 touchdowns and a very solid 10.1 yards-per-catch and this was after starting just 9 games. He also had 7 games of 70 or more YDs, where he showed he has the ability to be very explosive when he gets the ball in his hands.
His ability to bounce around that field on short hitches or quick Slants is lethal, what he can do on the field truly can be a game-changer for the Detroit Lions. He can take a short 3 yd grab and quickly turn it into some big yards up field. St. Brown is loaded with talent, there is absolutely no question to that. The biggest question is, if he’s going to be able to showcase it to his full potential.
Now of course, having Jared Goff as the quarterback, is truly the cog to how successful he might be. Although Goff isn’t a top tier QB, as he’s just above average, he can certainly complete short yard completions to him and let him attack the field. Goff is likely not the QB that any wide receiver is super excited to catch passes from, but he’s not completely inept, as he showed last year, throwing just 8 picks at a miniscule 1.6% rate, which improved from his prior season.
And certainly keep in mind that the defenses in the NFC North have not been outstanding, so having to deal with less-than-stellar corners. Detroit and Goff should be able to take advantage of mismatches.
Minnesota gave up 29 passing TDs in 2021, Chicago was torn up for 31, and the Packers gave up a load in the air as well. As good as DB Jaire Alexander is for Green Bay, he can be aggressive. He has very good timing, and jumps routes very frequently, but he can be beaten.
From everything I have read and seen, the Lions team staff also has great hopes for him. The first step for success for any player, let alone a young wide receiver, is for coaches to have faith in them and they have shown they have that in him. Having a staff that believes in you and wants to give you a chance to succeed is very important. A player can only be as good as the opportunities that he is given. The Lions and Dan Campbell have something going on in Detroit.
I certainly feel that Campbell has the eye to take St. Brown to another level. He is a player’s guy, who has brought the Lions from scoring 25th in the NFL last season, quietly to 2nd early in this season.
If Amon-Ra St. Brown can stay healthy, he will be a great WR1 for the Lions. I fully expect the 6-0 receiver to elevate his game this season. I don’t think that 1100+ YDs and 10 TDs are out of sight.