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Detroit Lions OTAs Day 5 recap: Kenny Golladay continues to impress

Kenny Golladay continues to shine in Lions OTAs.

NCAA Football: Eastern Michigan at Northern Illinois Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports

The Detroit Lions finished their fifth organized team activity on Wednesday. For the second time in two weeks, the Lions media was on hand to take notes, photos and observations from practice. Here’s a quick recap of the most interesting tidbits from Wednesday’s session.

To see the full recaps from the Lions beat writers, check out these links:

Also, if you’re jonesing for some photos, there are plenty available to look at:

Kenny Golladay is looking goooood

Every Lions beat writer made note of how good Lions’ third-round pick Kenny Golladay looked during Wednesday’s practice. Here’s just a sampling of his rave reviews through two weeks:

Tim Twentyman:

“I have yet to see a ball hit the ground when thrown Golladay’s way through two open OTA practices.”

Michael Rothstein:

“His pace of learning – for now, at least, without pads or contact or full-speed – appears to be a bit faster than anticipated.”

“It’s still early, but the Lions might have found a productive player in Golladay.”

Kyle Meinke:

“I didn't think Detroit was all that sharp during red zone drills, but Golladay consistently came up with the ball, including once on a one-handed grab in the corner of the end zone -- and he did it through pass interference from Johnson Bademosi

This is now two straight practices in which beat writers have singled out Golladay as one of the better performers during OTAs. For a pick that was criticized for being a reach or a bit risky in the third round, the early returns look awfully positive.

Jamal Agnew is back and in the return man competition

Last week, we took notice that Jamal Agnew was not part of the punt and kick return competition, but it appears that was more because of injury than anything. Last week, Agnew sat out of most drills in front of the media. On Wednesday, Agnew was back and part of the special team group returning kicks, which included Jace Billingsley, TJ Jones and Dwayne Washington, according to Meinke.

Injury updates

As expected, T.J. Lang remains out as he recovers from hip surgery. Tahir Whitehead was absent from practice, but reportedly was excused for personal reasons.

The biggest news was around Teez Tabor, who has been limited in OTAs because of a lingering hamstring issue. According to Michael Rothstein, Tabor saw much more participation in practice than he did last week:

The rookie didn’t do much positive – or negative – on Wednesday, but he was out on the field practicing and that’s a step up from last week, when he was not spotted doing team drills at all.

Theo Riddick remained out of practice, but was working with a trainer on the sideline. Note the huge brace on his right wrist.

Don Carey also remains out, and via this photo from The Detroit News, it appears he is wearing a cast on his left arm.

Ezekiel Ansah, Armonty Bryant and Corey Robinson were also sitting out Wednesday’s practice.


While Golladay was busy impressing the media with his hands, the Lions tight ends were not. “It wasn't the sharpest day for the tight ends overall,” Meinke wrote in his recap. Darren Fells reportedly dropped an easy touchdown, while Michael Roberts and, yes, Eric Ebron too, also had drops of their own.

The good news, however, is that Ebron apparently is putting in extra work to fix his notorious drop issue. Here’s an interesting note from Twentyman:

For the second week in a row, tight end Eric Ebron joined them -- Not to work on his footwork, but to catch some extra passes from all three signal callers as they went through their footwork drills.

The rise of Anthony Zettel?

With Ziggy Ansah sidelined for the day, Anthony Zettel shared first-team reps with Cornelius Washington, while Kerry Hyder worked the other side of the line, per Meinke. Zettel also made a nice play, according to Mike O’Hara:

Second-year defensive lineman Anthony Zettel caught up to Matthew Stafford on a scramble when a pass play broke down and tagged him around the waist.

Zettel figures to be deep down in the Lions rotation in 2017, but this is an indication that the Lions coaching staff is, at the very least, giving him an opportunity to win some meaningful snaps for his sophomore year.


As usual, the Detroit Lions offered up highlights from Wednesday’s practice. There’s not much to note here, except for a phenomenal catch made by Ryan Spadola over rookie cornerback Desmond Lawrence.