Summer is officially over for members of the Detroit Lions organization.
After a few weeks away from the hustle and bustle of a football season, it’s time to get to work before the start of the regular season.
Head coach Dan Campbell, speaking in front of many more cameras and reporters, was emphatic about how pleased he was with the squad’s commitment.
“Everybody committed, we’re all in,” Campbell said. “It’s a goal and it’s about getting better and getting ready for a season now. It’s not necessarily about ‘Hey, let’s make this a little better, it’s summer break now’. … I wanted to point out that. I was really proud of our boys. When they came back and they weighed themselves and tested, the conditioning test. That pretty much says what their engagement was, how serious they were over the summer. Man, our boys were outstanding.”
Campbell continued: “Everyone gained weight and we had all but one who passed the conditioning test. And this is the guy who started running a week ago and didn’t make it. So that’s a credit to our boys. They’re looking good, they’re in shape and they look ready.”
Three other members of the roster will miss the start of training camp as fullback Jason Cabinda, safety CJ Moore and offensive lineman Dan Skipper were added to the Physically Unable to Perform (PUP) list on Wednesday.
They join Romeo Okwara, Josh Paschal, Jameson Williams, Jerry Jacobs and Natrez Patrick as non-participants in the early days of training camp.
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jump in the second year
If the Lions are to succeed, the game of sophomores needs to improve.
There’s been debate all offseason about the jump that is made from a player’s rookie season to his second season in the NFL.
“We’re counting on it, we have to have it,” Campbell said. “I mean, if they don’t jump, we’re in trouble. That’s the bottom line because these guys are sort of our core and our foundation. I mean (Amon-Ra) St. Brown has to be better. (Penei) Sewell gotta be better Levi (Onwuzurike) gotta be better Mac (Alim McNeill) gotta be better (Derrick) Barnes gotta be better ’cause if they ain’t we ain’t we gonna go anywhere. So we look forward to it and will push him to be there and get there.
Detroit’s sophomore wideout appears poised and poised to make that leap, quarterback Jared Goff told reporters after practice. St. Brown has made significant strides since he last stepped onto the football field.
- The media room has been remodeled as more Lions artwork has made its way into the room where the reporters work.
- Hard Knocks has a significant presence in the practice facility as there are many separate workspaces for the team to shoot and edit. The increased presence does not appear to have hampered work in the field. There are just way, way more people documenting the events at the training camp.
- Campbell joined his players for another round of up-downs during the first practice session of training camp.
- The first few days of training camp are considered the acclimatization period as players return to the field before the pads can be worn.
- Wide receiver Quintez Cephus made a spectacular one-handed grab for a ball delivered by Goff. He ended the game with a dunk through the goal post.
- Defenseman Will Harris was listed as a cornerback, while Ifeatu Melifonwu was listed as a safety on the team’s roster sheet.
- Okudah and Harris shared replays in first-team defense. The former No. 3 overall looked healthy and moved well in cover.
- Goff was sharper than Boyle on Day 1 as Detroit’s backup quarterback is still struggling to connect with receivers. Some of Boyle’s throws sailed high and worked with the second-team offense.
- In an awkward moment, Goff admitted he hadn’t invited wideout Trinity Benson to his final practice in California, but acknowledged the wideout has also made significant progress in learning the offense.
- Running back Jamaal Williams brought the same intensity as last season, dancing regularly while waiting for the next position drill to begin.