The 2022 campaign was a disappointment for Lions running back D’Andre Swift, but he has to leave it behind as he moves toward a pivotal season in his career.
There was plenty of breakout buzz for Lions running back D’Andre Swift heading into this season, and he set a lofty goal for himself. In Week 1 against the Philadelphia Eagles, he started off nicely with a career-high 144 rushing yards.
Swift suffered a high ankle sprain in that game though, and in Week 3 against the Minnesota Vikings he added a separated left shoulder to his injury docket. Then he missed four games, with a bye week to give him an extra week off.
After his first game back, Week 8 against the Miami Dolphins, Lions head coach Dan Campbell openly said Swift was overused. He played just 10 snaps in the next game, and 45 snaps over the next two, before he topped 100 total yards against the Jacksonville Jaguars in Week 13.
D’Andre Swift ready to leave 2022 season behind him
Swift took a backseat to Jamaal Williams’ surge this season. But he did finish the season well. In Week 17 against the Chicago Bears, he had 78 rushing yards, 117 total yards and a touchdown rushing and receiving. In Week 18 against the Green Bay Packers, he set his season-highs as a pass catcher with seven catches for 61 yards.
The day after the Lions’ season ended, via Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press, Swift talked about the campaign from a personal and team perspective.
"Long year,” “Just blessed to be able to go out there and compete with the guys week in and week out and just contribute any way I could. Proud of the way we fought throughout the whole year. To end like how we did meant the world.”"
Swift added that he plans to meet with some doctors about his injuries in the coming weeks, but he’s operating with the assumption he will get back to full health with time off. In other words, no surgeries.
Swift finished the season with 542 rushing yads on 99 carries, 48 receptions for 389 yards and eight total touchdowns (five rushing, three receiving). If he had enough snaps to qualify for the leaderboard, Swift’s average of 5.5 yards per carry would have been second-best in the league among running backs behind Khalil Herbert.
With Williams and Justin Jackson entering unrestricted free agency, and Swift headed toward the final season of his rookie contract, the Lions will be somewhere in the market for running back help this offseason. But Swift, via Nolan Bianchi of The Detroit News, had a concise phrase when talking about next season, saying he “can’t wait” for Week 1.