It was in the second round of the 2012 NFL Draft, that the Detroit Lions drafted wide receiver Ryan Broyles out of Oklahoma with the hope that he would be a key receiver for many years to come. However, much to the dismay of the Lions and to Broyles, he suffered a number of knee injuries, which not only stopped him from being on the field continuously but it has also stopped him forming a consistent role in this Lions offense.
However, after never losing faith and continuously working hard to get back on the field. Broyles came into the training camp and preseason looking better than ever, as proved to the team’s new coaching staff that he could be a reliable piece and play-maker going forward.
So, why is it that Broyles has been inactive for the first two games of the season, you ask?
Well for one, you have to remember that Broyles isn’t the only slot receiver on this team. The Lions already have wide receiver Golden Tate and they have been working to turn return specialist Jeremy Ross into a third receiver, which is part of the reason why Broyles has been inactive the first two games of the season. However, the other part of it, according to head coach Jim Caldwell, is because personnel decisions change every week based on certain game situations.
“Each and every week, what we do, we take a look from an offensive standpoint at what best suits us for this particular game with the personnel we are dealing with.” Coach Caldwell said. “There are some times where the personnel group that we plan to spend the most time in will determine who is up or down in our situation.”
“I can understand why the question and the interest because of the fact that he had a very good preseason. He was able to do a lot of good things for us and we anticipate at some point in time that he might be able to help us. We’ll see. It could be this week, it could be next week, and it could be the week after.”
After having great play during preseason it wouldn’t be surprising in the least for Broyles to be irritated with his lack of playing time. However, like a true leader, Broyles has continued to be a good leader and teammate in the locker-room, as you can always find him smiling and providing a positive attitude.
“You just have to be mentally enough and just keep chipping away.” Broyles said Thursday. “I been through a lot and I feel like I’m at the top and back to where I want to be, so I’m all positive right now.”
Broyles is certainly at the top of his game. Not only did he lead the Lions in receiving yards during preseason play but when he was on the field, he was constantly putting himself in a position to succeed, catching anything and everything thrown his way.
Then if that’s not enough, he was constantly creating yards after the catch. If you look at his pre-season stats you will see that although he didn’t score a touchdown, he did garner over five catches for over a hundred receiving yards. While those stats may not seem impressive, keep in mind that Broyles did a great job of catching the ball on a consistent basis but more importantly, he did a good job of creating yards after the catch, helping the Lions to gain multiple first downs in every pre-season game, which is something the Lions have lacked in the past.
“I feel like I have shown a little bit of what I can do in preseason which is that I catch the ball and make some things happen.” Broyles replied. “I’m back to my old form. Mentally, I’m a better person than I was a year ago. I feel like we’ve got great play-makers, some guys who can stretch the field, some guys can get some underneath work going and some guys can do some things after the catch. So I feel like I can bring anything to the table that they want me to do.”
If you ask me, the Lions could very well find a place for him this Sunday, as they go up against the Green Bay Packers. Going into Sunday, it’s no secret that the Packers have stout defense, especially in their secondary with cornerbacks Sam Shields and Tramon Williams. Since the Lions will need to have offence success to win this game, it’s safe to say that Broyles name could be called.
Plus as Carlos Monarrez of the Detroit Free Press brought up, last week the Packers did have trouble with Jeremy Kerley, the New York Jets’ slot receiver whose game is similar to Broyles. So that very well could be another reason to call up Broyles this Sunday.
“(The Packer defense) is very well-rounded; they got some linebackers and guys up front out front who are veterans.” Broyles said. “So we’re definitely going to have to get the ball out of their hands quick, run the ball well and make plays especially down the field, when it comes to catching the ball but overall we just have to play a complete game. The defense is going to do their thing like they did last week and the week before so the offense has to do the same.”
I don’t about you but I firmly believe that the Lions could use Broyles this week and I’m sure many Lions fans will agree.
Nevertheless, Broyles says that regardless of whether he gets the nod this Sunday or not, he will continue to stay positive, stay healthy and most importantly continue to work hard, so when his name is called, he will be more than ready.
“I’ve been through so many injuries that it takes some time to get over it.” Broyles replied. “This is week three, I feel much better now in week three, than I did last year or the year before that. So I’m itching to get out there and make some plays but I’m taking it day-by-day right now.”
“You definitely have to prepare yourself, like your starter no matter what, regardless of whether you have been inactive or not. Anything can happen on a daily basis in this league.”
Written by LBeasley (Lauren Beasley), Sports Editor of Radio One Detroit
For more of L-Beasley’s (Lauren Beasley) sports news and in-depth sports content, click here.
Lions WR Ryan Broyles Is Patiently Waiting On His Moment was originally published on wchbnewsdetroit.com