3 Detroit Lions game balls for Week 15 against the New York Jets
1. WR Kalif Raymond
Raymond was given a game ball in the locker room after Sunday’s game, and it’s impossible to argue his worthiness. In a game against a team that cut him five years ago, a full circle moment for him if you will, Raymond had a 47-yard punt return for the Lions’ first touchdown and he also had five catches for 53 yards in the game.
Raymond has toiled in the background all season, with 39 catches for 454 yards (second on the team in both categories) as well as being one of the more productive punt returners in the league–now second in the league with an average of 14.6 yards per return. Via MLive, Dan Campbell recognized Raymond’s season-long contributions on Sunday.
"I just gave him a game ball,” He’s our iron man. He does everything for us. He’s been in there through some of the injuries we’ve had at receiver. He’s just been there every day, for every game, for every practice. He just goes. He is selfless, he’s disciplined, he’s a hard worker, he’s smart, he’s productive, he endears himself to his teammates and he’s versatile. He can block, he can play in the slot, he can play outside, he’s got run after catch, he’s a damn good punt returner. I think he’d be a great gunner too, but we want to be smart with how we use him."
Raymond naturally won’t get a lot of outside recognition for all he does. But it’s no secret to his teammates and coaches, and with an easy opportunity to give it to him he’s our No. 1 game ball recipient for Week 15.