Detroit Lions’ silver lining: Marvin Jones in Year Two

DETROIT, MI - NOVEMBER 23: Marvin Jones
DETROIT, MI - NOVEMBER 23: Marvin Jones /

Despite another down season in the Motor City, the play of Detroit Lions wide receiver Marvin Jones Jr. in his second year is reason for hope.

When it comes to the 2017 Detroit Lions, there aren’t many positive things to point towards. In fact, Lions head coach Jim Caldwell even recently admitted that there hasn’t been anything across the board that his team has been particularly good at this season. Wow. That about sums it up.

When your head coach admits to the media that his team is mediocre, that surely has to be a sign that his tenure is near it’s end, right? Regardless of Caldwell’s admission, there is in fact some things fans can be excited about heading in 2018. One of those things is the recent play of former first round selection, tight end Eric Ebron. Read all about that here.

But Ebron isn’t the only weapon that excelled for quarterback Matthew Stafford and this Lions’ offense this season. In his second year in Detroit, wide receiver Marvin Jones posted some impressive numbers.

For those that don’t remember, Jones signed a five-year, $40 million to join the Lions as a free agent the day after legendary wide receiver Calvin Johnson suddenly retired. And through his first four games in Detroit, it almost seemed like an even swap.

Jones racked up 23 receptions, 482 yards and two touchdowns through his first four games in the Motor City. He seemed destined for a Pro Bowl-caliber season. But for the rest of the year, his production dropped drastically. Jones ended his first season in Detroit recording 55 catches for 930 yards and four scores.

In the offseason, Jones was determined to be more consistent. He even worked with future Hall of Fame wide receiver Randy Moss to improve on his fundamentals.

That extra work appears to have paid of as Jones has doubled his touchdown total from last season with eight scores, which currently leads the team. He also recorded his first 1,000 receiving yard season in now his sixth-year in the NFL. With one more game to be played, Jones has posted a total of 57 receptions for 1,020 yards in 2017. And his 17.9 yards per catch average is the second highest in the league.

Next: Is Josh McDaniels the Detroit Lions next head coach?

The 27-year old Marvin Jones is still in his prime and appears to have many more productive seasons ahead of him. But in Year Two, the former Cincinnati Bengal has clearly established himself as a nice one-two combination with Golden Tate  And with the big play ability of rookie wide out Kenny Golladay, the talented trio makes the Detroit Lions’ receiver corps one of the best in the league.