NFL Analyst: Jameson Williams Is 'More Than Just a Speed Merchant'

Lions are expecting Jameson Williams to take next step in third season.
Jameson Williams
Jameson Williams / Tim Heitman, USA TODAY Sports
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The pressure is on for Jameson Williams to take a major step forward in his career progression.

Headed into the 2024 season, the third-year wideout is slated to be the  Detroit Lions’ No. 2 receiver, behind All-Pro Amon-Ra St. Brown on the team's WR depth chart. 

Yet, Williams, the No. 12 overall pick in the 2022 NFL Draft, has failed to deliver consistent production thus far.

He spent most of his rookie campaign recovering from a torn ACL that he suffered in his final season at Alabama. The “speed demon” proceeded to play in just six games in his debut NFL season, and amassed a lone catch for 41 yards and a touchdown.

Williams followed that up with a mediocre sophomore campaign. He missed the first four games of the season due to a gambling violation, and ended up recording 24 receptions for 354 yards and two touchdowns. He also carried the ball three times for 29 yards and a score.

Williams will certainly be relied upon for more steady production this upcoming season, and one of the reasons why is the departure of Josh Reynolds. Reynolds, one of Jared Goff's go-to targets the past two-and-a-half seasons in Detroit, inked a free-agent deal with the Denver Broncos this offseason, and the Lions decided not to fill the void with an external acquisition. 

Instead, players like Williams and Donovan Peoples-Jones, who was re-signed by Detroit this offseason, will be expected to take on bigger roles in Ben Johnson's offense. 

In the eyes of Lions head man Dan Campbell, Williams – through the first week of OTA practices – has looked like a changed man.

“We’re two practices in and if you said, ‘Give me one player that is the most improved from that start to finish in that time,’ Jamo would be that guy right now,” Campbell said of the third-year pro. “He is a man on a mission, and I’m just going to leave it at that."

Campbell isn't the only individual bullish on Williams’ stock for the 2024 season, either. NFL Network analyst Brian Baldinger also heaped praise upon the 23-year-old on a recent episode of “The Insiders,” labeling Williams as “more than just a speed merchant.”

“Now there were a lot of pieces in this Detroit Lions offense, but nothing is like the speed that this man has. He just runs at a different speed,” Baldinger said while breaking down film of Williams from last season. “He runs right by (Cowboys defensive back) DaRon Bland right there. And, when you watch him in the NFC Championship Game against the 49ers, the opening drive of the game, they flip it to him on an end-around for 42 yards. The next thing you know, the Lions are up, 7-0. Like he just outran the pursuit angle of the 49ers, and he also scored the final touchdown of the game. 

“I think Ben Johnson is drawing up ways to get Jameson Williams, ‘Jamo,’ free this year, isolated one-on-one, whether it’s against a No. 1 corner, whatever it is, single-high safety. They’re just going to take their shots to a guy with this kind of speed, and he’s more than just a speed merchant. This guy can run all the routes, and he is so dangerous after the catch.”

Vito Chirco


Vito has covered the NFL and the Detroit Lions for the past five years.  Has extensive reporting history of college athletics, the Detroit Tigers and Detroit Mercy Athletics.  Chirco's work include NFL columns, analyzing potential Detroit Lions prospects coming out of college, NFL draft coverage and analysis of events occurring in the NFL.  Extensive broadcasting experience including hosting a Detroit Tigers podcast and co-hosting a Detroit Lions NFL podcast since 2019.