After many years with Matthew Stafford under center and the tandem of Kenny Golladay and Marvin Jones Jr. at wideout, the Detroit Lions hit the reset button during the 2021 offseason. The team parted ways with all three players, Stafford in a trade with the Los Angeles Rams and Golladay and Jones leaving via free agency.
With those stalwarts gone, the Lions turned to quarterback Jared Goff and a stable of unspectacular and unproven wide receivers. That list included veterans Breshad Perriman and Tyrell Williams as well as second-year pro Quintez Cephus.
The Lions assumed Perriman would serve as one of their starting receivers when they signed him in March, a notion reinforced by the $2 million the team guaranteed in his contract. That assumption proved incorrect, as Perriman “struggled throughout camp,” according to The Athletic’s Chris Burke. The wideout’s multiple dropped passes during Detroit’s preseason finale did little to help his cause.
Perriman’s release makes Williams the obvious top wide receiver on the roster, though tight end T.J. Hockenson might see more targets during the season. Cephus should see some action in the slot, but rookie Amon-Ra St. Brown could cut into that workload.
Fantasy football implications
The Lions’ passing game probably won’t support many players from a fantasy perspective. With Hockenson coming off a 101-target campaign and ready for even more, perhaps only Williams offers real fantasy value. The veteran wideout might not merit a roster spot every week, but fantasy managers will probably find a few weeks to stream him.