The Detroit Lions are trying to solidify their wide receiver roles before the start of the season and things just got more confusing as T.J Jones might end up being the odd man out after suffering a hamstring injury. If you want to bet on the Lions, check out the Detroit Lions sports betting odds.
Before the hamstring injury, Jones was having a solid preseason and was in the mix to earn one of the receiver positions on the team. Jones had been making enough plays to earn him some first team reps with rookie receiver Kenny Golladay.
Even though many believe Jared Abbrederis or Jace Billingsley would have beat out Jones for one of the receiver spots, Jones was not expected to go down without a fight. Now that he has an injury that will prevent him from competing at full strength, Jones doesn’t have much of a say in the end.
Jones’ injury occurred on Saturday night against the New York Jets. The receiver, who started and was also a punt returner, injured his hamstring in the second quarter of the team’s 16-6 win over New York. At the time, the severity of the injury wasn’t known, but he looked bothered by it as he headed into the locker room.
Golden Tate, Detroit’s top receiver, said it was frustrating to see any player get injured in the preseason.
While Jones’ status is unclear at the moment, the injury could have a bigger impact on him because he is no longer eligible to be signed to the team’s practice squad.
Many thought Jones would make the team last year, but he was one of the surprise cuts at the end of the preseason last year. At the time, the Lions kept Anquan Boldin and told Jones he wasn’t strong enough to provide them with what they were looking for.
Jones said he took those comments to heart and added some muscle mass during the offseason. According to teammates, Jones also came into the offseason program with a new attitude, knowing it could be his last chance with the Lions.
Fellow receiver Marvin Jones said you could notice the added mass when Jones reported to camp and he thought it would be good for him.
Adding to Jones’ frustration is the fact that hamstring injuries are very tricky. The injuries tend to linger and a lot of times, players reinjure it when they return to the field. In some cases, there aren’t any setbacks, but the risk is still always there.
A good example is Lions tight end Eric Ebron, who suffered a hamstring injury on the first day of training camp, but hasn’t been able to participate in any team drills since.
With preseason almost over, the injury couldn’t have come at a worse time for Jones. Now that he is sidelined, Golladay will get his first-team reps, and if the third rounder impresses the coaches, he might be the one that takes Jones’ role on the team, which means the Lions will likely release Jones after the preseason is over.
Other fringe receivers like Billingsley and Abbrederis will also benefit from the injury to Jones because it means one less person they have to compete with for a job.