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Burleson hopes to give Lions receiving boost

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Posted Oct. 09, 2010 @ 2:31 p.m. ET
By Eric Edholm

The Lions have made no bones about wanting to have a multiple-option passing game, much like the Vikings now appear to have with the acquisition of WR Randy Moss. The Lions made a bold free-agent move in signing WR Nate Burleson with the hopes that he would be a perfect counterpoint to their version of Moss, Calvin Johnson. But so far, Burleson has been held down. First, in Week One, QB Matthew Stafford got hurt and the Lions barely had the ball for much of the game. And then Burleson got hurt on the first offensive play in Week Two, leaving him out the next two games. He believes he will return Sunday against the Rams and fits an important role in their offense, playing the X-receiver and moving into the slot in three-WR sets. Burleson also could be a factor on punt returns if Stefan Logan fails in that role. But Burleson will earn his money as a deflector of coverages for Johnson and as a red-zone and deep-ball threat. Getting him on the field will allow the team far more offensive flexibility, especially with how it uses TEs Brandon Pettigrew and Tony Scheffler.

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