Allen Park — When the Detroit Lions traded Golden Tate, it became clear Kenny Golladay would have to do more. But in the first game post-Tate, Detroit’s budding second-year wideout was targeted just four times, catching three passes for 46 yards.
Golladay doesn’t feel the pressure to pick up the slack in Tate’s absence. Golladay said he’s continuing to attack every day the same. He’s almost passive when asked about his recently depressed production, pointing to the flow of the game as dictating why quarterback Matthew Stafford has looked elsewhere the past three games.
“When my number is called, I try to make the most of those plays,” Golladay said. “I’ve just got to be ready. You never know when your number is going to be called.”
At the same time, he acknowledged disappointment with his output in Sunday’s loss to Minnesota.
“I feel like I’m doing an OK job, but what, I only had like three catches last week,” he said. “Of course I want more than that.”
Golladay raised expectations with his hot start this season. Through five games, he hauled in 27 passes for 428 yards and three scores. He even had two other touchdowns wiped out by penalties in those contests.
Yet over the past three games, he’s been a background piece in Detroit’s aerial attack, averaging two catches for 32 yards. He’s also been held out of the end zone.
Golladay initially tried to downplay that he’s seeing different coverage looks since the start of the year, before acknowledging there was a noticeable shift after the first couple weeks.
“I’m pretty sure since a little bit after the first game or the second game, people started keying in on me,” he said. “Yeah, every team, their defense has little things they want to do. Sometimes they might double me on one down, then flip it and double (Marvin Jones). You just have to be ready. You never know what coverage you’re going to get leaving that huddle until the ball is snapped.”
This Sunday, Golladay will return to his hometown of Chicago when the Lions play the Bears. This will be his second trip back as a pro, catching two passes for 52 yards in Detroit’s 27-24 win last season.
Lions at Bears
Kickoff: 1 p.m. Sunday, Soldier Field, Chicago
Records: Lions 3-5, Bears 5-3
Line: Bears by 6