Lions WR Young can keep defenses honest

Posted July 08, 2012 @ 11:26 a.m.
Posted By Mike Wilkening

WR Titus Young drew praise for his play in the latter portion of the club’s offseason workouts, with head coach Jim Schwartz saying at the club’s June minicamp that the second-year wideout had “probably looked the best that I’ve ever seen him look in this couple-week span.” Improvement from Young, who caught 48 passes for 607 yards and six TDs as a rookie, would add even more punch to an already strong passing game. Young has already proven he can give opposing defenses that are occupied with stopping Calvin Johnson another vertical threat to fear.

"He can hurt you," one evaluator said of Young, noting the danger of overlooking the Boise State product. With Johnson meriting double-team coverage, the evaluator said: "If the QB (Matthew Stafford) is on ... you should be able to take advantage of the other matchups."

Eighteen of Young’s 2011 receptions came on passes of 10 yards or longer — twice as many as Nate Burleson, who was the starter opposite of Johnson and who was targeted more often than Young. It has been far from a perfect offseason for Young, who reportedly punched S Louis Delmas and was banished from the club for a time, but Young's upside, particularly in this offense, is apparent.