Lions wide receivers coach Antwaan Randle El has been speaking about the players he’ll be in line to work with, and Quintez Cephus got some mention.
One way or another, it’s a virtual lock the Detroit Lions will be notably adding to their wide receiver depth chart this offseason. Free agency, the draft or even trades will offer options. That makes it easy to forget about some internal holdovers, namely Quintez Cephus.
Cephus came in as a fifth-round pick by the Lions in 2020, with 20 catches in 13 games as a rookie. This season, he was off to a decent start (15 receptions for 204 yards and two touchdowns) before a collarbone injury in Week 5 against the Vikings ended his season.
Along with the options that wil exist from the outside, the Lions have free agent wide receivers Josh Reynolds and Kalif Raymond to consider re-signing. There will be plenty of competition in place, which wide receivers coach Antwaan Randle El clearly wants.
Is Quintez Cephus still part of the plan for the Lions?
Randle El followed Lions general manager Brad Holmes’ sentiment of belief that wide receiver Trinity Benson has a place in the plans. Via Tim Twentyman of the team website, Randle El also spoke about Cephus.
“I feel like Q (Cephus) was really taking some strides before he got hurt,” Randle El said. “You see flashes in Q for sure because Q just has this unbelievable – like he can get off the field and jump. Being able to just put it up (to him) and make a play. You see him go up one hand and be able to come down with it.”
Cephus had at least five targets in three of his four full games last season. In two of his last three full games, he topped 60 yards and averaged more than 15.5 yards per catch. It’s hard to say he was headed for a huge breakout, but Cephus surely would’ve maintained a significant role if he’d been healthy.
Cephus will find himself battling for a roster spot when the offseason program starts. But at this point, he has better chance to stick around than Benson does, and he shouldn’t be forgotten.