The Detroit Lions have seen some impressive physical transformations this offseason, and quite possibly the best might be from a key offensive player.
Tight end T.J. Hockenson, who wasn’t small to begin with, appears to have bulked up significantly ahead of the 2020 season and is showing off some impressive new muscles to the masses ahead of training camp. It caught the attention of the internet prior to Lions camp getting underway.
Look at Hock 👀😳 pic.twitter.com/as4PnrzIIa
— S w e t a P a t e l (@sweta2311) August 16, 2020
Obviously, the Lions need Hockenson to be ready for the 2020 season, and it’s clear with this update that he took the offseason very seriously en-route to that goal. Hockenson didn’t have a bad start to his career, but inconsistency and injury cost him in 2019, and clearly, he doesn’t want that to be the case again whatsoever.
A stronger Hockenson could be the key to making the entire offense go this season, and it will be fun to watch and see what he can do with his stronger look when it comes to catching passes and making plays.
T.J. Hockenson Worked Out With George Kittle
Hockenson, coming off injury, has gotten back on the field and back to work this offseason. That includes a training session with fellow former Iowa Hawkeyes teammate George Kittle of the San Francisco 49ers.
Here’s a look at Hockenson getting his workout in:
A healthy Hockenson 👀, training with Kittle 👀👀👀. pic.twitter.com/7gdY2EOxnT
— FantasyFootBub (@FantasyFootBub) July 8, 2020
The Lions hope that Hockenson can be half as good as Kittle has been during his early time in the league, and the similarities the duo share are certainly interesting. It’s good to see Hockenson’s leg drive looking much better after injury, and he certainly looks ready physically for another season in the NFL.
T.J. Hockenson Offseason Injury Update
Hockenson had a promising rookie season cut short by an ankle injury, but now the tight end is looking set to make a big return and is on track to do so according to his offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell.
Speaking earlier this offseason, Bevell was asked about Hockenson and said that he is running routes and is progressing well.
Darrell Bevell says TJ Hockenson (ankle) is back running and running routes but might not be quite 100% yet. Adds he’s “well on his way to being there” and that the Lions are comfortable with his progress.
— Chris Burke (@ChrisBurkeNFL) June 17, 2020
As camp has gotten underway, that theme has only continued.
T.J. Hockenson is out here and moving well. No surprise after seeing some of his workout videos this offseason, but still a good sign for the Lions.
— Chris Burke (@ChrisBurkeNFL) August 17, 2020
Detroit needs Hockenson to be able to contend in 2020, and if he is healthy, that would be a big plus for the Lions and their offense. As it sounds from this update, Hockenson looks to be good to go in terms of health.
T.J. Hockenson’s Role With Lions
There is simply no understating the importance of Hockenson to the Lions in the future. The team didn’t get much of anything from any of the other tight ends on their roster, and while he hasn’t had the most dramatic statistical impact, Hockenson has easily been one of the team’s top rookies in 2019 and a player capable of impacting both the run and the passing games.
During the season, many fans chided Hockenson for not making a bigger impact on the game. He had only 367 yards and 2 touchdowns on the year which is not the statistical impact that many people expected from him as a top 10 selection for the team.
Safe to say if Hockenson was able to play the end of the season, his stats could have ended up different. The Lions will hope he can get things on the right track for 2020.
Certainly, at this point, Hockenson looks the part for the Lions and that might only be the case more with his new look.