ALLEN PARK — Detroit Lions common supervisor Brad Holmes didn’t supply a timetable for the return of prized rookie broad receiver Jameson Williams. However Holmes clarified that he and the crew aren’t sweating taking it sluggish with the receiver’s restoration from an ACL harm.
Williams suffered the harm whereas enjoying for Alabama within the nationwide championship sport again in January. The speedy rookie will open the 12 months on the non-football harm record (because the ACL tear occurred in school), that means he’ll miss not less than the primary 4 video games.
“He’s on observe, once more, I’m not going to place out a tough date, however I’ll say, the weeks and weeks he’s strung collectively along with his rehab, and he’s so gifted from a genetic standpoint,” Holmes mentioned on Thursday. “As soon as he retains that consistency going, it really may speed up that return that we’re considering.
“You bought to be a little bit bit conservative and on the safer facet in relation to forecasts and people returns to play. However hopefully, he stays on observe, and hopefully it’s ahead of later, however we’re going to proceed to be good with him. We’ve all the time mentioned that from Day 1. I do know he’s chomping out the bit, I imply he’ll placed on a helmet proper now and go on the market. He would jog a slant route if he may, however he — I imply — however we’ve received to be good as a result of we didn’t make that transfer for him only for 12 months 1. It is a long-term funding.”
The rookie has remained engaged on the sideline. He’s by no means removed from the coaches and nearly all the time carries a soccer with him throughout observe. And whereas Williams appears to be like to own one thing particular. The crew’s much-improved receiver state of affairs is another excuse to play it secure and keep away from forcing something on the street again. The Lions have Amon-Ra St. Brown, DJ Chark, Josh Reynolds, Kalif Raymond and Quintez Cephus on the roster to open the 12 months. If anyone wanted a reminder of that improved depth, it’s value pointing to Tom Kennedy dominating the preseason and predictably touchdown on the observe squad once more, to not point out Cephus being the highest choice final 12 months when wholesome.
Williams had 79 receptions for a ridiculous 1,572 yards and 15 touchdowns at Alabama final season. His prime recorded pace throughout his lone season in Tuscaloosa was greater than 23 mph on a 94-yard rating in final season’s opener.
The Lions moved up in April’s draft for the appropriate to take Williams. Holmes despatched Picks 32, 34 and 66 to the Minnesota Vikings for Picks 12 and 46. It was a uncommon, aggressive transfer up within the order, particularly one for an injured broad receiver. Earlier than coaching camp, Holmes advised Peter King he beforehand lived by the mantra of “don’t draft damage guys within the first spherical” however that he was “completely convicted” about Williams.
And for individuals who haven’t seen Holmes reacting to the New Orleans Saints drafting receiver Chris Olave at Decide 11, opening the door for Williams to Detroit, ensure to examine that out. Saying the second-year common supervisor was convicted about his WR1 could be an understatement.
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Holmes punted on a query relating to Williams’ potential function when he’s cleared for motion, saying that’s one for head coach Dan Campbell. The overall supervisor talked about Williams’ versatility and distinctive skillset, although, asking, “if he’s not a full-time broad receiver, does he play particular groups?”
Williams was an electrical returner and flashed his physicality at Alabama whereas enjoying some gunner. He notably downed a punt on the 2-yard line, then received referred to as for focusing on in the identical sport towards archrival Auburn.
“Effectively, he’s received some rattling good gunner tape on the market within the SEC,” Holmes mentioned. “He’s received some good return tape on the market within the SEC, so we’ll have some choices.”