He may not have played much on offense last season, but Detroit Lions running back Theo Riddick has received a lot of love lately. First, Lions offensive coordinator Joe Lombardi mentioned Riddick as one of the players that he's "pretty impressed with and excited to work with," and Lombardi also said that Riddick "is a player that has some ability." What's more, NFL Network's Daniel Jeremiah called Riddick his "favorite sleeper for the upcoming season."
On Tuesday, fellow running back Reggie Bush was the latest person to talk up Riddick, and he agreed with the "sleeper" description. From the Detroit News:
"He’s definitely a sleeper," Bush said. "When you watch him in practice and you see him in action, he’s definitely a guy that can make plays from anywhere on the football field."
The Lions' top two running backs are clearly Bush and Joique Bell, but there's definitely a role for a player like Riddick in their offense. The New Orleans Saints got several backs involved last season, and Lombardi has brought their scheme to Detroit. That means that Riddick could see a big increase from the 9 carries, 25 yards and 1 touchdown he had last year, and it seems likely that he will have more than only 4 catches for 26 yards.
I personally don't know if I'd call Riddick a sleeper at this point, but if the Lions rotate their running backs as much as New Orleans did last season, he could get a significant amount of playing time in 2014.