The Detroit Lions kicked off their third week of training camp on Monday, back at home after their road trip to Pittsburgh. This week, the Lions will face the Bengals at Ford Field on Thursday. Here’s a quick recap of Monday’s practice based on the observations from the media.
Camp observation sources:
- Justin Rogers of The Detroit News
- Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press
- Tim Twentyman of DetroitLions.com
- Michael Rothstein of ESPN
As we mentioned on Monday, Lions practice was dominated by injury news. Here’s a list of players that did not participate on Monday:
- LB DeAndre Levy - still on the NFI list
- LB Jon Bostic - Jim Caldwell confirmed Bostic had surgery on Monday
- LB Zaviar Gooden - injured in preseason game
- TE Brandon Pettigrew - still on PUP list
- TE Eric Ebron - injured ankle in last Saturday’s Mock Game, unknown severity
- WR Corey Fuller - still on PUP list
- OG Geoff Schwartz - unknown
- LB Josh Bynes - unknown
In addition to those listed above, Michael Ola (ankle) and Don Carey (knee) suffered injuries during Monday’s practice. The severity of those injuries are unknown.
The Lions practiced outside again on Monday, and during a portion of practice, rain was coming down in buckets. DetroitLions.com has some great pictures of just how bad it was raining.
Jim Caldwell liked the opportunity the rain offered. "We love this," he said per Birkett. "We’re an indoor team with an outdoor mentality."
The weather severely impacted the quarterbacks’ abilitlies to run the offense. Matthew Stafford was having trouble gripping the ball, while Jake Rudock fumbled a snap and butchered a play before it even began.
The Lions play 13 of 16 games indoors this season, so the outdoor elements may not play too much of a factor in 2016, but Caldwell still believes it was a valuable experience for the team.
Struggles continue for Taylor Decker
Though one-on-one drills put offensive linemen at a disadvantage, several reporters mentioned a notably bad day from Lions rookie Taylor Decker.
Taylor Decker had a rough day in one-on-one drills. Ziggy Ansah blew past Decker in his first pass-rush snap for a would-be sack, and while I didn't see it firsthand, others said Brandon Copeland drove Decker back later in the period.
Not a great day for rookie Taylor Decker, who was easily bested by both Ezekiel Ansah, on an inside rush, and Brandon Copeland, who powered right through the offensive tackle. Ansah got around Decker so quickly that he dove through the suspended tackling dummy and slid across the wet field on his stomach like a Slip'N Slide.
Decker is coming off a poor performance in his first preseason game, allowing a crucial sack that ended the Lions’ opening drive.
The rest of the offensive line looked good
Despite Decker’s performance, the Lions beat was generally very positive about Detroit’s offensive line. Twentyman called Monday’s one-on-one drills the best he has seen the offensive line play all camp, specifically praising Laken Tomlinson, Travis Swanson, Larry Warford, Cornelius Lucas and Joe Dahl.
Rothstein agreed with the sentiment, saying “this was one of the better days for the offensive line in individual drills against defensive linemen.”
This comes as good news for a unit that struggled both mentally and physically in the Lions’ preseason opener last week.