Just yesterday the trade deadline was upon us and the Detroit Lions made a major play by trading their most reliable wide receiver, Golden Tate III, to the Philadelphia Eagles.
The trade comes as a shock to many fans however the Detroit Lions were able to gain a third-round pick for the 2019 NFL Draft in exchange. With just 9 games remaining to play on Tate’s five-year deal, head coach Matt Patricia was content with the agreement, however admitted in his most recent press conference that it was certainly a ‘difficult’ decision to make.
“For us, it’s again the holistic picture of taking a look at what’s best for us to do as a team and in those situations. They are not easy decisions, and they are certainly difficult decisions,” Patricia added. “Again, for us, it’s not about one player. It’s about a team. It’s about everybody. We have a lot of guys that are really good on this team that can produce, and honestly, for me, we have confidence in everybody on this team right now, that everybody can go out and do their job.”
Golden Tate began his career with the Seattle Seahawks in 2010. In 2013 however, Tate had a breakout year, within which he was apart of the Super Bowl winning Seahawks team, as well as proving his worth both as a wideout and a punt returner.
It wouldn’t be until he signed for the Detroit Lions that he would finally develop into a franchise wide receiver. In 2014, his first year as a Lion, Tate set a career-high in both receptions (99) and receiving yardage (1,331). He also caught 4 touchdown passes and for his efforts was subsequently nominated to his first and only Pro Bowl as of yet.
Moreover, in spite of only starting 4 of 7 games this season, he’s been the most reliable receiver on the team thus far. Furthermore, he leads the team in both receptions and reception yardage with 44 and 517, respectively. His legacy will continue to be felt for decades to come, due to the fact that he ranks seventh overall in all-time reception yardage for the Lions.
Golden Tate also shared his thoughts on the trade, adding that it was a “dream come true”.
He stated: “I want to do whatever it takes to help this team to win. I’m not demanding anything. I just want to win. That is why I came here.”
— NFL (@NFL) October 30, 2018
The trade is obviously a steal for the Eagles. They recieve a reliable slot receiver who is dynamite when utilised converting on short running routes which he can convert into big plays. Tate is also the leading blocker of receivers on his team which is another great asset. Yet, for the Lions, does it spell the end of their playoff hopes?
Honestly, not really. Firstly, the Lions are situated last place in the NFC North with a negative win/loss record of, 3-4. Moreover, they unfortunately find themselves in a division stacked with talent, what with the underachieving Green Bay Packers, who are incredibly close to becoming a dominant force in the league, as well as having to contend with two of the best defensive teams in the NFC in the Minnesota Vikings and the Chicago Bears.
Nevertheless, if the Lions are to have a change in fortunes this season, they still possess speedster Marvin Jones who looks to be their number 1 target for the remainder of the season. In addition, it provides an opportunity for younger prospects to shine, like that of the 96th pick in the 2017 NFL Draft, Kenny Golladay.
If all else fails, the Lions possess another low round draft pick which they would’ve been bereft of had Tate tested free agency. Additionally, the trade will provide a pick that is useful in their attempts to rebuild the roster for the upcoming season, as well as creating cap space for the franchise.
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