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O'HARA: What we learned from Week 17

Detroit Lions rookie wide receiver Amon-Ra St. Brown is making a name for himself with his prolific production in recent weeks.

He has 82 catches, with 43 coming in the last five games.

The attention is well deserved. The stats don't lie, and St. Brown added to them in the Lions' 51-29 loss to the Seattle Seahawks Sunday.

What we've learned -- and what we've heard -- is how St. Brown has caused such a stir that fans and media are looking for players with whom to compare him.

Among the other things we learned in Sunday's game include the following: The Lions have a breaking point in games, and it happens less often than their record of 2-13-1 would indicate; and a young defensive lineman has begun to realize the potential the Lions saw when they drafted him.

We start with comparisons to St. Brown:

There is no perfect fit for St. Brown. For example, he might match their production but he does not have the size of Herman Moore and Calvin Johnson, the two greatest receivers in franchise history.

Here are some others:

Terry Barr, a Lion from 1957-65, was drafted as a defensive back and switched to receiver. Barr had back-to-back 1,000-yard seasons and Pro Bowl appearances in 1963-64.

Brett Perriman was acquired in a trade in 1991. A Lion from 1991-96, he had 108 catches in 1995 and 94 in 1996. Perriman was built like St. Brown, and he was the toughest downfield blocker I've covered.

"I like to hear them squeal," he once said. And he meant it.

Theo Riddick, a 2013 sixth-round pick, a combination running back/receiver, had a four-year stretch of 80, 53, 53 and 64 receptions.

Mentioned most prominently as a reminder of St. Brown is Golden Tate, who signed as a free agent in 2014 after four seasons with the Seahawks.

Tate had 99, 90, 91 and 92 receptions in his first four seasons with the Lions. He was traded to the Eagles midway through the 2018 season.

At 5-10 and 197 pounds, Tate was similar to St. Brown in size. Tate yearly was one of the top receivers in yards gained after the catch.

Breaking point: It came early against the Seahawks, who had a 16-0 lead. After a TD by the Lions cut it to 17-7, the Seahawks stretched it to 31-7 at halftime and then to 38-7 in the first minute of the second half.

In Week 6 vs. the Bengals, a 10-0 halftime deficit skyrocketed to 27-3 in what became a 34-11 loss. And in Week 8 vs. the Eagles, a 17-0 halftime deficit exploded to 41-0 in a 44-6 loss.

Head coach Dan Campbell, who is not known to sugarcoat a situation, said this after Sunday's game: "If we play like this against Green Bay, it'll be the same score."

Sack time: It has been a slow process for Austin Bryant to be the player the Lions thought they were getting when they drafted him in the fourth round in 2019.

It's worth waiting for players who've shown pass-rush skills, as Bryant did at Clemson.

Injuries have slowed Bryant's development. After playing only 10 games in his first two seasons, Bryant has played 15 games this year. He got a sack Sunday, giving him 4.5 for the season. He also has six quarterback hits.

It's progress.

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