Detroit Lions Training Camp Battle Preview: Wide Receiver Spots Hard To Come By

Detroit Lions Training Camp Battle Preview: Wide Receiver Spots Hard To Come By
By Josh Markowitz
Fact Checked by Thomas Leary

Rookies have already reported to the Detroit Lions Training Facility in Allen Park for camp, while the veterans will join them Tuesday. Coming off a 3-13-1 year in 2021 that left little optimism across Michigan sportsbooks, second-year coach Dan Campbell is seeking growth from his team as the Lions continue to rebuild their roster. 

Detroit elected to make its splash in the draft and focused on adding depth through free agency, resulting in some fearsome competitions for both starting roles and backup spots across multiple position groups.

GreatLakeStakes.com analyzed Google Trends data to discover which of these training camp battles are attracting the most attention locally.  

Unsurprisingly, it turns out the three most searched position groups β€” wide receiver, linebacker and edge rusher β€” all had major offseason additions to the room as the Lions look to become a playoff contender by 2023 according to Michigan sports betting apps.

As the wide receivers earned the most searches over the past month, GreatLakeStakes.com also broke down the percent of traffic generated by each player at that position.

How these position battles shake out will help bettors get a sense of what Michigan sportsbook promo codes to keep an eye out for during the Lions upcoming season.

Most Searched Lions Receivers in Michigan

🏈 Jameson Williams61%
🏈 Amon-Ra St. Brown20%
🏈 D.J. Chark9%
🏈 Quintez Cephus4%
🏈 Josh Reynolds3%
🏈 Kalif Raymond2%
🏈 Trinity Benson1%

Rookie Jameson Williams Leads the Way

Amon-Ra St. Brown caught 90 passes for 912 yards as a rookie last season but is overshadowed by this year’s 12th overall pick Jameson Williams.  

The dynamic Williams will start training camp on the non-football injury list as he recovers from a torn ACL, but once he is cleared, he figures to start and add much needed explosiveness to the offense. 

FanDuel Michigan currently lists Williams at +2000 to win AP NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year.

The Lions also brought in D.J. Chark on a one-year deal from Jacksonville to give Jared Goff another proven weapon. 

Quintez Cephus, Josh Reynolds, Kalif Raymond and Trinity Benson all contributed to various degrees last year and return to round out the room with some versatility.

A Closer Look at the Linebackers Battle

Alex Anzalone and Derrick Barnes should once again see significant snaps this season, but free agent addition Chris Board could push for more playing time in Detroit than he saw in Baltimore given his flashes in coverage and on special teams. 

Shaun Dion Hamilton missed all of 2021 with an injury, but he appears healthy now and gives the Lions another linebacker with real coverage ability. Jarrad Davis, a 2017 first rounder, is also back in the rotation after spending last year with the Jets, while this year’s sixth round pick Malcolm Rodriguez should earn playing time too, at least on special teams.  

The three other linebackers currently on the team face an uphill battle to make the final roster.

Now for the Edge Rushers

After finishing 30th in sacks last season, Detroit used two of its first three draft picks on edges. 

Plymouth native and former University of Michigan star Aidan Hutchinson should start immediately after being selected second overall in April, while second rounder Josh Paschal should factor into the rotation once he returns from the PUP list.  

Over at BetMGM Michigan, Hutchinson is the favorite to win AP Defensive Rookie of the Year at +500.

Opposite Hutchinson, Charles Harris appears locked into the starting lineup after re-signing for two years in the offseason following a 7.5 sack campaign.  

Romeo Okwara joins Paschal on the PUP list to start training camp as he works his way back from a torn Achilles, while his younger brother Julian and seventh rounder James Houston provide depth to the group.

Super Bowl Odds

🏈 Buffalo+600
🏈 Tampa Bay+750
🏈 Kansas City+900
🏈 L.A. Rams+1100
🏈 Green Bay+1200
🏈 San Francisco+1400
🏈 Dallas+1600
🏈 Denver+1600
🏈 L.A. Chargers+1600
🏈 Baltimore+2000
🏈 Cincinnati+2000
🏈 T26 Detroit+12500
Odds provided by BetMGM Sportsbook Michigan.

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Contributors

Josh Markowitz is a freelance writer for GreatLakesStakes.com. He is a lifelong sports fan with an emphasis on college basketball, football, baseball and the scouting/evaluation process. A graduate of Elon University's School of Communications, Josh also has experience in television production.

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