The Detroit Lions only have one option; re-sign reciever Kenny Golladay

Billy Hardiman-USA TODAY Sports
Billy Hardiman-USA TODAY Sports /

Since the Detroit Lions spent their third-round pick in 2017 on Kenny Golladay, he has been turning heads.

The early reports coming out of the Detroit Lions training camp back in 2017 were about how this Kenny Golladay kid is catching everything thrown in his direction.

As he continued to prosper as an NFL player, the rabid Lions fanbase started to attach to him and realize that general manager Bob Quinn hit this draft pick out of the park.

Heading into the 2020 season, there had been a lot of uncertainty about whether or not the NFL would even play, how they would play, and how much of the season would alter during its course. One thing that never wavered, though, is the fact that Golladay was heading into the final year of his current contract.

The Detroit Lions had two players during this offseason that were on the top of the list to be re-signed. Left Guard Taylor Decker and wide receiver Kenny Golladay.  Before the season began, they came to terms with Decker on a four-year $60-million extension. It was widely assumed that Golladay’s new deal would closely follow.  However, as we sit here heading into Week Eight, he is still a pending free agent.

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General manager Bob Quinn and his staff have painted themselves into a corner where signing the teams’ top pass-catcher to a significant extension (even if it’s more than they initially wanted to give him) will be less detrimental to the Lions.  In the long run, letting him leave in free agency, whether it’s this spring or in the spring of 2022, assuming Quinn uses the franchise tag on him in 2021, remains a far worse option.

Looking at the Lions current roster, there are only two wide receivers signed past this year.  Quintez Cephus, a fifth-round draft pick in the 2020 draft, and Geronimo Allison who decided to opt-out this year due to COVID-19 and his child’s birth. Cephus has only recorded six catches for 97 yards.  Those six catches came in the first two games of the year when Golladay didn’t play due to injury.

The Detroit Lions are the only team in the NFC with just two wide receivers signed through next year.  Two teams in the AFC have two wide receivers signed passed this season, and they are the Titans and the Chiefs.  Because both of those teams played in the AFC Championship Game nine months ago; I would say they are better positioned than the Detroit Lions currently are.

Golladay has been a significant part of this Lions offense for the last two years.  In 2018 he led the team in targets with 119, receiving yards with 1,063, and was tied for the lead with touchdowns with five.

In 2019 he again led the team in targets with 116, receiving yards with 1,190, and lead the ENTIRE NFL in touchdowns with 11 while playing eight games with a backup quarterback. Even after only playing four of the first six games so in 2020, he is second in team targets with 28 and leads the team in receiving yards with 338.

Whether or not Marvin Jones or Danny Amendola decide to return to the Lions next year, they will not get long contracts, and there is no doubt they are not at the level Golladay is. He is as vital to this team as anyone else not named Matthew Stafford.

dark. Next. Lions have an opportunity to string together a bunch of wins

Regardless of who is under center for the Lions in 2021, they will need someone to throw the football too.  With how this roster is constructed, it will be much worse with the extra money saved, and no Golladay as oppose to less cap space and someone who is arguably a top ten talent at his position.