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Joe Dahl’s advice to rookies: ‘Have fun’ on the football field

The guard offers some words of wisdom for those battling it out with less than two weeks until the season opener.

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Trying to make the roster in a normal season is nerve-racking enough. Throw in the craziness that is 2020, and it’s downright daunting.

As training camp comes to a close and just 13 days linger until the Detroit Lions’ season opener against the Chicago Bears, time is running out for players on the roster bubble to secure a spot, and those confident they have a spot have a short time to fight to be a starter.

Having once been in their shoes, guard Joe Dahl said it’s likely been a tough time for rookies. Cancellations have had an impact on this group especially, losing out on on-field offseason football activities in the spring and the hands-on experience at a higher intensity offered in preseason games.

“I couldn’t imagine not having a spring ball to learn the offense and you know, just start to work on technique so I can only imagine what’s going through their head. I’m sure that they’re all swimming a little bit—a little bit more than usual,” he said.

But Dahl offered a piece of advice for those going through it right now.

“The main thing is just have fun, you know? They’re all going to be trying their best and you never really know what’s going to happen after the roster cuts and whoever they decide is the starters and everything like that. I think the main thing for them is just to have fun. You never know when it could be your last time on the football field, so just enjoy it,” he said.

Watch the entire interview below:

And onto the rest of your notes.

Pro Football Focus analyst Sam Monson says Matthew Stafford’s aggressiveness is the key to the Lions’ success this season. (Subscription required.)

  • The Chicago Bears aren’t announcing their starting quarterback for the opener against the Lions on Sept. 13. Rod Beard for The Detroit News explores what that means for Detroit.
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