Danny Amendola knows what success looks like. Maybe even more importantly, he still remembers what success feels like. He’s played in 13 playoff games (10 wins), won two Super Bowls and pulled in 278 yards and two touchdowns in three championship games.
Now in his second year with the Detroit Lions, Amendola is trying to spread that knowledge—and that inspirational feeling—to his teammates. Though quarantine has kept him at a physical distance from most of the team, he’s gone the extra mile(s) to connect with some of those players, including young star receiver Kenny Golladay.
“Kenny Golladay’s another player that I’ve been training with in our room,” Amendola said on a Zoom conference call Wednesday. “He came down to Austin. We got some good work in here in Austin and did it in a safe manner. We want to get together and get as much work done as possible but to stay safe is most important.”
And while Amendola can obviously teach Golladay a thing or two on the field, the veteran receiver says the two talk most about the team’s overall goal: winning.
“What Kenny and I talk about now is we want to win,” Amendola said. “We want to get to the playoffs. We want to have a home playoff game at Ford Field. I tell him as much as I can there’s nothing like that feeling of winning for your city, and that’s what we want to see the most. That’s what inspires us. That’s what pushes us day in and day out, because we want to win for our club, for our city, and we want to represent Detroit.”
That all starts with the team’s quarterback, and Amendola traveled down to Atlanta privately to catch reps with Matthew Stafford, even earning the nickname “Uncle Danny” from Stafford’s daughters. And Amendola believes Stafford is healthy and eager to win, too.
“Got three or four days of great work in, and he looks strong,” Amendola said. “He’s back, he’s hungry, and he’s ready to go. He’s going to continue to prepare. He has everything set up at his house where it’s basically an extension of the facility. He’s got a weight room and all the machines that you need to get your work done. So we got some great work in.”
One player Amendola hasn’t been able to get together with yet is rookie receiver Quintez Cephus, but he’s doing all he can in Phase 2 of the virtual offseason and hopes to catch up soon.
“He and I have spoken, and then we are in Zoom meetings together trying to progress as a team,” Amendola said. “Obviously, I haven’t been able to link up with him yet to run routes or to pick his brain and see where he’s at mentally, physically. Obviously, that’s part of what we’re missing here and part of the frustration of quarantine, but hopefully (I’ll) get together with him soon and progress in that manner.”