Skip to main content

10 QUESTIONS WITH TWENTYMAN: Will Golladay finish the season strong as Lions' No. 1 WR?

During the regular season Tim Twentyman will answer 10 good questions from his Twitter account @ttwentyman in a feature we call "10 Questions with Twentyman."

20man: The word 'creativity' has been thrown around a lot this week with the Rams coming to town, but Los Angeles and Kansas City aren't doing anything that hasn't been done before. Rams head coach Sean McVay admitted as much this week on a conference call.

"As far as the ingenuity and stuff, a lot of these things are things that certainly we're not the first people to do it," he said.

One thing that does make them unique in that regard is McVay is very open to adding to the offense when they think something will work, especially taking concepts from the more open college game, and implementing them in their offense. It's been key for them that they're always adapting and adding to their offense.

The other part of it is they just do a better job than most putting players in great positions to succeed. Who runs this route the best? That's the route he runs the most. Who has the best matchup in space against this opponent? Let's do everything we can to match it up as many times as we can. McVay has a great understanding of his personnel and their strengths. That's what makes them so good, not some scheme or batch of plays no one has ever seen before.

As for the Lions wanting to be blue collar, a team always has to take on the identity of their head coach. They can't try to be something the head coach isn't. That's Patricia's approach and style, and it's been very successful for him in the past.

20man: I don't see why not. Golladay hasn't had Marvin Jones Jr. the last two weeks. He produced an eight-catch, 113-yard performance against Carolina with a touchdown. He caught another six balls for 78 yards on Thanksgiving against Chicago.

Teams are starting to adjust to Golladay being the No. 1 guy for the Lions. Coverage is shifting that way at times, and he's seen increased help over the top. It's important for the second-year receiver to see some of that and continue to find ways to beat it, which he's done the last two weeks. That's an important progression for a young receiver like him.

I really like Golladay. He's on his way to his first 1,000-yard season. He's a very atypical receiver in that he doesn't say much, he just comes to work and grinds out the week. That should serve him well throughout his career.

20man: For as good as the Rams front looks on paper, they rank in the middle of the NFL in sacks with 29. Defensive tackle Aaron Donald has half of those (14.5). Ndamukong Suh is second on the team with 3.5. It really starts and ends with Donald. He has 10 sacks in the last five games. He has to be priority No. 1, and I'm assuming he will be.

This isn't a great Rams defense overall. Let's not forget they gave up 51 points to the Chiefs. They don't rank better than 19th in any major statistical category. There are plays to be had for Detroit's offense Sunday. Can they find them and take advantage?

20man: The Lions have missed Tate, no doubt, but I can't answer this question in all honesty until we see what the Lions do with the third-round pick they received for Tate. If they turn it into a Kenny Golladay-type player, it's a great move.

As far as Tate in Philadelphia, he hasn't cracked 50 receiving yards in any of his first three games there. There's certainly an adjustment period going on. Tate isn't a traditional receiver, and I think Philly is still trying to feel out just how to use him. Him being untraditional is what makes him so dangerous -- that's why he and Matthew Stafford were so good together -- but it's a tough thing to develop between quarterback and receiver midseason.

20man: About 0.1%. The financials of moving Stafford ($30 million cap hit) alone don't make much sense. Beyond that, everything I've heard from Bob Quinn, Patricia and any other coach who has stepped up to a microphone is Stafford is the guy, and there's 100 percent support behind him. I just don't see it.

20man: I'll always go with the pass rusher. The great thing about potentially needing one this offseason is this draft class is loaded. There are likely to be up to 12 defensive linemen ranked among the top 32 players in this year's draft. Some of the names include: Ed Oliver (Houston), Nick Bosa (Ohio State), Rashan Gary (Michigan), Dexter Lawrence (Clemson), Raekwon Davis (Alabama) and many more.

This class is loaded, and the Lions could come out with a good pass rusher, especially if they don't franchise or re-sign Ziggy Ansah.

20man: The thing we have to remember is that we see these players for a few hours on Sunday. The coaches and the people who make the decisions on inactives see them in practice and in the meeting room. They watch countless hours of film preparing the game plan each week, and make the decision for gameday based on all of it.

Hyder's played in five games this season, and has three tackles. He's caught in a numbers game upfront because the Lions typically keep six defensive linemen active on gameday. Ziggy Ansah, Romeo Okwara, Da'Shawn Hand, Damon Harrison, A'Shawn Robinson and Ricky Jean Francois have outproduced him.

Powell played 24 snaps in the slot in Chicago Week 10, and had one catch for six yards. He's returned two punts for three yards and two kickoffs for an average of 21.5 yards. The Lions just seem to like what Bruce Ellington provides them from a veteran and consistency standpoint. Andy Jones can play on the outside, while Powell is strictly a slot guy.

Powell is still a young player who is improving, but I understand the inactive status there.

20man: The Lions have been wildly inconsistent from week-to-week this year, but until they are mathematically eliminated from playoff contention, the goal should always be to play the best players that give them a chance to win each and every week.

20man: That is the great mystery Quinn and Patricia have to work out. There was always going to be some inconsistency on defense implementing a new scheme and the adjustment period that comes with that.

The really perplexing part has been the inconsistency with the offense and Stafford, who's been better supported with the run game. Even when he had Kenny Golladay, Marvin Jones Jr. and Golden Tate playing together, there was inconsistency. That's the real head scratcher for me.

Good teams are consistent teams. They may have a down week, or run into a tough game plan, but Detroit's looked like two completely different teams at times this season. That has to be frustrating. How do they play so poorly against the Jets, Seahawks and Bears, and then look so good defeating the Patriots, Packers and Panthers?

20man: The hope should always lie in the young players and those players that really seem to get what Patricia is trying to do here. Having Damon Harrison for two more seasons to build around should give you hope. Darius Slay is still in his prime. Rookie defensive lineman Da'Shawn Hand looks like he can be a great player.

Running back Kerryon Johnson looks like the real deal. Golladay continues to produce as a No. 1 receiver. We don't even notice Frank Ragnow at guard, which is a good thing.

There are some nice pieces to work with. The Lions should have spending capital this offseason, and a good amount of draft picks.

Related Content