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Lions’ D’Andre Swift: Can He Be 2022’s Top Running Back?

Detroit Lions running back, D’Andre Swift has a lofty goal for himself that seems somewhat attainable if he can play in all 17 games.


Detroit Lions running back, D’Andre Swift has a lofty goal for himself that seems somewhat attainable if he can play in all 17 games.

It’s a two-game sample size, but D’Andre Swift has been productive and impressive so far. The Lions’ coaching staff’s biggest struggle isn’t necessarily about how to use Swift effectively, it will be how to rotate him in and out enough to keep him healthy for the full season. It’s the one thing that Swift has struggled with so far in his young career, staying on the field. Swift set a goal for himself in the offseason to rack up 1,000 yards rushing and 1,000 yards receiving this year. Let’s take a look at if he’s on track for that, assuming he plays all 17 games, which again is a strong assumption.

D’Andre Swift’s Rushing Pace

Swift started the year rushing for 144 yards when the Lions took on the Eagles, starting with this strong, long run:

Swift later ran one into the endzone, after Jamaal Williams powered in a couple of his own. In the second half of the Eagle’s game, Swift reportedly played through a sore ankle. He told reporters it would be nothing to worry about, but then didn’t practice until late last week, leading to the report the Lions would likely limit Swift or put him on a monitored snap count. This limited his opportunities against the Commanders, but he took advantage of the ones he had.

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Swift ran just five times for 56 yards in week two, bringing his two-week total to an even 200 rushing yards. That makes the math simple. If he keeps his 100-yard rushing pace, Swift will not only meet but will impressively overachieve his goal with 1,700 rushing yards in 2022.

Lions’ D’Andre Swift’s Receiving Pace

Swift has 31 receiving yards in each game so far this year, bringing his total receiving yards to 62. This puts him on pace to gain 527 total receiving yards over the 17-game season. However, with highlights like his receiving touchdown from last week, he should get more targets.

With Amon-Ra emerging as one of the league’s most dangerous wide receivers, there will be less team focus and game planning to stop Swift out of the backfield, which will hopefully open opportunities for more targets and big play potential.

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My Prediction On How D’Andre Swift Finishes Out The 2022 Season

It’s not fun to project injuries, so I won’t build that into my projection. I trust the coaching staff to rotate Jamaal Williams, Craig Reynolds, and others all season long to keep Swift fresh for a playoff push. If they continue to utilize him similarly to how they did in their win against the Commanders, I can see 1,250 yards rushing and 650 yards receiving for the year. Those yardage marks would be career highs for Swift and would probably put him in the top five for most productive running backs for the season.

If Swift can manage to meet his own goal of 1,000 yards rushing and 1,000 yards receiving this season, it will certainly mean continued success for the Lion’s offense. Even if he only hit one of those targets, it would still be impressive and a huge step forward for his young career. Swift figures to be a key building block for what Dan Campbell and the Lions are trying to accomplish this year and beyond. It will be exciting to see if he can become not only a fan favorite of Lions fans but of Fantasy Football and NFL fans from every team.

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