When the Lions selected St. Brown out of the University of Southern California in the 4th round of the 2021 NFL Draft, I was very excited. The reason for my excitement was that I thought he could come in and become the next Golden Tate for the Lions' offense.
Though he did not get off to the hottest of starts (six catches in his first three games) Amon-Ra finished the 2022 season as one of the most productive wide receivers in the entire National Football League as he racked 51 catches for 560 yards and five TDs in his final six games, making those who owned him in fantasy football extremely happy.
In fact, during those final six games, St. Brown had eight or more catches in each game, which puts him in a position to join some elite receivers in NFL history.
If he catches eight or more passes in Week 1 of the 2022 season, St. Brown will join Antonio Brown, Michael Thomas, Anquan Boldin, and Travis Kelce as the only players in the history of the NFL to accomplish that feat. *Brown and Thomas both did it in 8 games.
Lions WR @amonra_stbrown needs 8 receptions in his first
game vs. @Eagles Week 1 to become 5th player ever to record at least 8 receptions
in 7 consecutive games, joining Antonio Brown (8 in 2014), Michael Thomas (8 in 2019), Anquan Boldin (7 in 2005) & Travis Kelce (7 in 2020)
— Tim Twentyman (@ttwentyman) July 19, 2022
Will Amon-Ra St. Brown remain on the field in two-wide receiver sets?
During a recent article published by Pro Football Focus, Dwain McFarland explained why Amon-Ra St. Brown's offensive production could take a hit during the upcoming season.
From Pro Football Focus:
St. Brown is a centerpiece to dominating your draft at wide receiver in 2022, thanks to his 80.0 PFF receiving grade as a rookie, among other things. He has shown an ability to dominate targets, even when defenses know he is the primary option — something most receivers can’t do when given a chance.
However, the one potential chink in his armor for 2022 would be a reduction in routes thanks to multiple additions to the receiver room. Over the last seven games in 2021, St. Brown skyrocketed in route participation thanks to an expanded role beyond slot duties. One other out would be an offense centered around three-wide receiver sets like the Rams.
If St. Brown is limited to a slot role and the Lions plan to use multiple personnel groups, it could dampen 2022 production.
During the 2021 season, the Lions lined up in 2-wide receiver sets 25% of the time and 3-wide receiver sets 63% of the time, which was slightly above the league average.
I predict the Lions will line up with three wide receivers more than 63% of the time during the 2022 season so that they can keep Amon-Ra St. Brown on the field as much as possible.
Nation, if you had to place a bet, do you think Amon-Ra St. Brown's catches more or less than 90 passes during the upcoming 2022 season?