The Detroit Lions had a special run to finish the 2022 season. The Lions won eight of their last 10 games to finish 9-8. Despite having been eliminated from playoff contention, Detroit played spoiler in the final NFL regular-season game against Green Bay as the Lions won at Lambeau Field.
Lions wide receiver Amon-Ra St. Brown hopes Detroit can replicate its late-season success heading into the 2023 campaign and take it a step further.
"I know we won a few games last year, we finished pretty strong, but man, I want to go to the playoffs bad," St. Brown told Detroit Free Press’ Dave Birkett. "I feel like Detroit as a city, they want it so bad. I feel like as a team we want it bad. I feel like we got the guys to do it, so I'm just excited to start winning games consistently, week in and week out."
St. Brown's hungry for a postseason the Lions have been absent from for some time.
Detroit's last playoff appearance came in the 2016 season with a wild-card loss to the Seahawks. The playoff matchup featured Russell Wilson and Matthew Stafford; quarterbacks who play with different clubs now. The team's last playoff victory dates to 1991 in a win over the Cowboys.
St. Brown set career highs with 106 receptions, 1,161 receiving yards and six touchdowns to make his first Pro Bowl last season.
"We had a pretty decent offense last year," St. Brown said. "Obviously, you want to be No. 1 in every category, so I think that's what we're striving for as an offense. Obviously, No. 1 in total yards per game, total scoring offense, we want to be No. 1 in all those categories. Not turning the ball over. I think we did a pretty good job of that last season, but you can always improve. So I think honestly, I think if you ask Ben, his goal would be to be No. 1 in all categories, and that's my goal, too. I think that's everyone's goal on offense because we know we can do it."
Detroit's offense could also be better with Jameson Williams entering his second season healthy. The 2022 first-round pick only played in six games in a limited role after tearing his ACL in his final college game with Alabama. The 12th overall pick completed the season with one catch for a 41-yard touchdown on nine targets.
St. Brown is eager to work with the second-year receiver and see his development with a healthy offseason.
"I can't wait to see Jamo fully getting a whole offseason under his belt, being able to work with all of us," St. Brown said. "I can't wait to see what he does. I've seen it in practice. I know what he can do. It's just a matter of everything just lining up. He came off that knee, threw him in toward the end of the season, so just him getting a whole offseason under his belt, being able to work out, train how he's used to training. I think the sky's the limit for him. I can't wait to see what he does. I know he's for sure going to stretch that defense so hopefully underneath routes will be much more open, but I can't wait to see what he does on the field."
Detroit's talented young core was on display last year, and St. Brown expects to play a role once again in one of the top emerging offenses.