Lions HC Dan Campbell said second-round DT Levi Onwuzurike (back) is working with the team’s training staff and is hopeful his injury isn’t a long-term issue.
“Look, you’re always going to have some type of concern, but I would say, man, he’s young, he’s hungry, he works,” Campbell said, via Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press. “I think we’ve got good people around him to help him. I think that we know what we’re looking at now cause we’ve sent him to a couple of places and I think he’ll be just fine. I think, like, you can’t worry about it. I think he’ll be OK, and that’s what we wanted clarity on. We think this will be fine and we’re ready to put him back into practice next week and let him go.”
Campbell added that they plan on increasing Onwuzurike’s reps in practice next week.
“And everything seems to be good and so we just chose to, let’s really think about rehab, strengthening, things of that nature this week and then let’s get him fired up next week,” Campbell said. “So you’ll see him next week is the plan.”
Campbell mentioned that they sent him to an independent back specialist, but acknowledged that there is “still time” for the rookie to get prepared for the regular season.
“There’s still time,” Campbell said. “There’s still time to get in there and he’ll continue to grow as the season goes. But we want him to develop, we want him to come along. That’s the reason we drafted him, but also, I don’t want this to be like we’re in a hurry to do something that he’s not ready for, either. Like, we’ll take this as it comes cause he’s willing to put in the work. It’s nothing like that. I mean, he’s hungry. He’s mad at us that we sent him to somewhere else. He wants to practice, man. And you love that about him. But also, hey, let’s take it as it comes and when he’s ready, he’s ready. If he’s not, he’s not. That’s all right, too, right now.”
- Campbell said TE T.J. Hockenson and DE Da’Shawn Hand are dealing with “minor injures” and were held out from Wednesday’s practice as a precautionary measure. (Eric Woodyard)
- Regarding Hockenson, Cambell is confident he’ll be fine: “We feel like he’s gonna be fine, but yet want to make sure we’re taking care him, too.”
- Lions’ new CB Nickell Robey-Coleman said he passed on several teams like the Texans, Cardinals, Falcons, and Seahawks before signing with Detroit: “I had about 6 or 7 teams calling in to check on me. When I came here, the people was the right people to go with so I took my talents here.” (Eric Woodyard)
- Packers HC Matt LaFleur had high praise of TE Josiah Deguara‘s performance in training camp: “Deguara looks fantastic. It looks like he picked up right where he left off … he’s such a savvy, smart football player.” (Matt Schneidman)
- Deguara recalled how he sustained a torn ACL after getting rolled up on in October of last year: “You get rolled up on a thousand times in this game — and I’ve been rolled up on a thousand times in my career — and it’s just something that happened.” (Ryan Wood)
- Aaron Wilson reports the Packers worked out WR Dominique Martin.
- Vikings WRs coach Keenan McCardell said the competition for the team’s Nop. 3 receiver role is “going well” between K.J. Osborn and Chad Beebe: “It’s going well. I think everybody’s up to it.” (Chris Tomasson)
- McCardell points out that new WR Dede Westbrook is still learning their system and working his way back from a torn ACL: “He’s learning. New system for him. Guys are helping him.” (Chris Tomasson)
- McCardell added that he expects Westbrook to be a part of their offense: “I know what to expect [from him]. … Whenever it’s time for him to get on the field, I think he’ll get on the field and show people that he can play. He’s going to be a guy that can help us.” (Andrew Krammer)
- Vikings HC Mike Zimmer said rookie QB Kellen Mond was a bit “rusty” after returning from the COVID-19 list: “Little slow with his reads, I thought. We had the 2-minute drill, and he was kind of, and I know it was just kind of a walk-through thing, but he needs to speed up the tempo a little bit.” (Andrew Krammer)
- Vikings G Dakota Dozier thinks his competition with Oli Udoh for the starting right guard role will bring out the best in both players: “Oli and I are getting after it. Every day we have an opportunity and we go out there and make the best of it. Competition is great. Makes you better.” (Chris Tomasson)