Lions might have a bigger 2022 draft bust than the Vikings

Detroit Lions WR Jameson Williams has not lived up the expectations that come with being a top-15 draft pick.
Detroit Lions wide receiver Jameson Williams
Detroit Lions wide receiver Jameson Williams / Mike Ehrmann/GettyImages

While the Minnesota Vikings have their own struggles with safety Lewis Cine, the Detroit Lions aren't getting a return on their investment from receiver Jameson Williams.

After making a trade with the Minnesota Vikings on the first night of the 2022 NFL Draft, the Detroit Lions used the 12th-overall pick in the first round to select former Alabama wide receiver Jameson Williams.

The trade with the Lions ultimately resulted in the Vikings being able to select safety Lewis Cine, cornerback Andrew Booth Jr., guard Ed Ingram, and linebacker Brian Asamoah in the first three rounds of the 2022 draft.

While Cine has made a minimal impact for Minnesota since he was drafted, he at least still has a chance to develop into a solid contributor one day. That might not be the case for Williams since he's significantly struggled with something that is essential to his job as a wide receiver: catching.

Detroit Lions WR Jameson Williams doing his best impression of former Minnesota Vikings WR Troy Williamson

After he was unable to haul in a pass despite being targeted six times in Detroit's 38-6 loss to the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday, Williams has now only caught 23.8 percent of the targets he's had in the nine games he's appeared in since entering the NFL in 2022.

Sure, of the five passes he's actually hauled in, two of them have resulted in touchdowns (including one against the Vikings last season), but those opportunities to score are only going to decrease if he continues to drop the football every time it hits his hands.

Five catches in nine games is just inexcusable for a player who was selected with the 12th overall pick. Vikings star wide receiver Justin Jefferson, a former first-round draft selection, had 42 catches in the first nine matchups of his NFL career.

That might seem like an unfair comparison, but the Lions were hoping Williams would wind up being their team's version of Jefferson when they used a top-15 draft pick on him last year.

Perhaps Detroit needs to take a different approach with how they utilize Williams in their offense since he had no trouble putting up impressive numbers in 2021 at Alabama during the final season of his college career.

Whatever needs to be done, the Lions have to figure something out because, eventually, whoever is throwing the ball for them is going to grow tired of Williams dropping passes almost every time he's targeted.