One of the most important and perhaps season-altering play happened in the third quarter of the Lions 20-6 victory over Tampa Bay when quarterback Jared Goff fired a 45-yard touchdown pass to “misunderstood” and controversial wide receiver Jameson Williams.
We witnessed the speed and the athletic ability on one play which showed why the Lions moved up in the draft to select him. This is why the Lions were willing to wait him out as he battled through injuries, unprofessionalism and a gambling suspension. There is no one in Lions history who possessed this speed. No one outside of Hall of Famer Calvin Johnson who could pop the top of a defense like Williams.
He drops too many passes. Teammates say he is misunderstood. And he is the most polarizing player on the Lions. Some were ready to call him a bust. Others come to his defense whenever he is criticized.
“He is like Mr. Misunderstood,” linebacker Alex Anzalone who raced onto the field to celebrate with Jamo, told The Detroit News. “It’s so great to see him make that play. I hear the outside noise for him and I just know that it makes me so proud to see him do that. That’s mu guy. I love him.”
People often ask what I see in him.
Speed. Speed. Speed.
“I thought he did a great job turning on the gas, getting to the back pylon,” Lions Coach Dan Campbell said. “And he did a great job tracking that ball and made a huge play. I think that’s going to help his confidence. That’s step one and that will help his confidence and we’ll go from there.”
Let me disagree with Campbell slightly. More than anything it will give the Lions more confidence in Jamo. I never understood why they did not send him on periodic fly patterns. This is his strength.
In the short term he won’t be one of those receivers who gives you nine catches for 150 yards and two touchdowns in a game. That hopefully will come next season and beyond.
Right now he is a gimmick player. He is a guy that when the time is right the Lions will ask Goff to air it out to him once or twice a game to see if the Lions can catch the defense napping for a quick six. He is all but useless on come back routes and patterns over the middle.
Goff does not have enough practice time because of the suspension and injuries to have a good chemistry with him.
This one play could open up a lot of things for the Lions. The trust in Jamo wasn’t quite there before the catch. He got no targets in the first half and barely any playing time. Now maybe the Lions have more faith in him and will turn to him more often.
Jamo is not Amon-Ra St. Brown.
He is not Kalif Raymond. He is not Josh Reynolds. Jamo has a unique skill set that few in this league have.
Let it fly. Let it soar or let it die.
For more from the author Terry Foster, check him out on Twitter here: @terryfosterdet
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Original Photo Credit: © Nathan Ray Seebeck – USA TODAY Sports