The Detroit Lions have an exciting wide receiver group heading into the 2022 season, highlighted by the trio of Amon-Ra St. brown, D.J. Chark, and rookie Jameson Williams. Detroit still won’t provide a timetable on when Williams will take the field after suffering a torn ACL in January, preferring to take its time with its first-round pick.
The Lions can afford to be patient with Williams thanks to veterans like Josh Reynolds, who is a forgotten — but productive — No. 4 wideout on the roster. With Williams sidelined, Reynold is getting his opportunity to produce in training camp.
Lions head coach Dan Campbell has liked Reynolds since Detroit claimed him off waivers last year. Year 2 in the Lions’ system could lead to a big season for Reynolds — a player Campbell is comparing to several quick insects.
“I like this guy. I’m kind of buying stock on him. I think he could have a big year,” Campbell said. “He’s a smooth athlete and he’s a grinder, he’s smart and Jared (Goff) trusts him. And so, I can’t say enough about that room in general and he’s a big piece of that, but those guys are pros in there and they work, and they are smart.
“But he’s – I’ll tell you what he’s just – he’s different now. He’s a different athlete. There’s a slip – he’s slippery, man. I call him the ‘praying mantis,’ he’s a spider of death. He’s just – there’s something about him, so – freaking serpent. So, I love where he’s at right now. I really do, I’m glad we got him.”
Reynolds was productive in his seven games with the Lions, finishing with 19 catches for 306 yards and two touchdowns (16.1 yards per catch). He added stability to the wide receiver group when claimed in November, as St. Brown emerged when he was added to the roster. St. Brown recorded 51 catches for 490 yards and four touchdowns in the seven games with Reynolds. He had 59 catches for 601 yards and five touchdowns since Reynolds was added to the roster (eight games).
Reynolds’ nickname is just one of the many Campbell gives his players, which is becoming a tradition in Detroit. Part of the reason why players enjoy Campbell.
“I love those guys, man, I do. So, look they’ve got nicknames for me, so it’s all good,” Campbell said. “I don’t know what they are, but I know they’ve got them.”