Young Lions star eyes playoffs following ‘strong’ finish in 2022: ‘We’re not no walk-over team now’
The Detroit Lions 2022 became a force late in the season, winning eight of its final 10 games and for wide receiver Amon-Ra St. Brown, who finished his second year with the Pro Bowl, the goal for next season is clear: the playoffs.
St. Brown, Fourth round pick out of USC in 2021, told the Detroit Free Press last week that the Lions’ performance late last season has created a reputation that they are now the team to beat — a reputation that comes with mixed emotions.
“I talk to the other players, they told me, ‘Man, you guys were moving toward the end. We didn’t want to play you in the playoffs,'” St. Brown told the outlet.
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“So teams know now. We’re not a walk-over team anymore. I think it’s going to make it tough for us this season, but it’s going to make it more fun because I’ve seen teams in the past a lot. I feel like, my rookie year, they’re going to come into our stadium thinking it’s going to be an easy game for them, that they’re going to win. And maybe it was, maybe it wasn’t.”
He continued, “But I feel like for us going forward, we know teams are going to be on their A-game when they play us, so we’ll be ready for that.”
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St. Brown was selected to his first Pro Bowl last season as an alternate after hauling in 106 receptions for 1,161 yards for six touchdowns. He also broke the franchise record for youngest receiver with a 1,000-yard season in December, topping the record previously set by Hall of Famer Calvin Johnson.
“I feel like for me, like moving forward, obviously I have personal goals but what I really want to do this year, I’m just, I know we won some games last year, we were very Strong position, but man, I want to. Bad to go to the playoffs,” St. Brown said.
“I feel like Detroit as a city, they want it so bad. I think as a team we want it bad. I think we’ve got the guys to do it, so I Excited to start winning games consistently, week in and week out.”
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The Lions finished 9-8 for the franchise’s first winning record since 2017. They addressed some of their defensive needs in the offseason and bolstered their offense with the signing of former wideout Marvin Jones.
Jones, who played for the team from 2016 to 2020, has also seen changes.
“I played against this team – it’s different,” Jones said earlier this month. “The organization is different in terms of culture and things like that. It was interesting.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.