The most concerning positional group for the Detroit Lions entering training camp next month is undoubtedly their wide receiver corps. After allowing the vast majority of their starters to leave this offseason, the new regime in the Motor City has attempted to patchwork a group together signing various free agents to one-year deals.
But the Lions don’t figure to be done addressing their wide receiver needs as they continue to attempt to find productive contributors for their new quarterback under center, Jared Goff. If new general manager Brad Holmes is willing to give up some of his future draft capital, here are four wideouts Detroit could consider making a trade for this summer.
#4. James Washington, WR – Pittsburgh Steelers
A second-round selection out of Oklahoma State in 2018, James Washington has been toiling on the Steelers’ wide receiver depth chart for his entire NFL career. But he’s had two solid seasons in Pittsburgh racking up a career-high five touchdowns last year as a seven-game starter. The season prior he had sort of a breakout, racking up 44 receptions for 735 yards and three scores.
According to the Still Curtain’s Andrew Falce, our FanSided Steelers’ site, Washington has the talent to be a starter on most teams. Unfortunately, just not in Pittsburgh. And that’s due to the amount of talent ahead of him on the depth chart.
Entering a contract year, the presence of JuJu Smith-Schuster, Diontae Johnson, and Chase Claypool on the depth chart seems to indicate that it’s unlikely Washington will find himself a major role in Pittsburgh before his contract runs out and he becomes a free agent. This could make him available for a modest trade right now.
There’s certainly some projection being done here, but there appear to be enough bread crumbs leading to the idea that James Washington’s production could explode with more opportunities. And at this point, the Lions just need more top-end talent to add to their makeshift wide receiver corps.