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One thing you can count on with the Detroit Lions is that they are never, ever boring. Follow the latest news including injuries, roster moves and more here daily from Oakland Press beat writer Paula Pasche. Plus you'll find regular commentary about the team.


Camp fires Day 9: Shake, shake, shake

Every day during training camp, Lions beat writer Dave Birkett takes you inside practice at Allen Park with notes, quotes and observations of interest.

• There's plenty of times I use this blog to be critical of the Lions for whatever reason, but coach Rod Marinelli deserves credit for his sincere interaction with the fans. If there were 700 spectators at Friday's open morning practice, I'd be surprised if Marinelli didn't meet 690 of them. He made his way along the fence on the the near side of the practice field, not just signing autographs but stopping to chat with anyone who asked. On his way over to the media, he made time for one final little girl in a pink Roy Williams jersey. "How you doing today? Did you enjoy practice? What's your name?" And it's not just for show either. At the NFL combine in Indianapolis this year, Marinelli made time for a man and his son in a Lions jersey in the hallway leading into the RCA Dome. The place is filled with autograph dealers and their runners, but when Marinelli spotted a couple true Lions fans he spent a few minutes shooting the breeze.

• On the field, Kevin Smith took most of the No. 1 reps with Tatum Bell excused for medical reasons from the morning session. Smith is neck and neck with Roy Williams for the most charismatic player on the team. If there's a local business with endorsement money to spare, Smith is a guy who can move product. He's engaging, funny, and he's going to have a productive season. "If it was up to me I would have had" some endorsements already, Smith said. "I feel like I deserved it. I thought I was going to have some coming close to Barry's record. I thought they were going to make this big commercial. It would have been nice, but maybe that life wasn't for me. Maybe I would have took that endorsement and I wouldn't have been focused out here, I would have got Hollywood before I made it to training camp. So everything happens for a reason." In time, Smith could own this town.

• Marinelli said he doesn't expect any of the Lions on PUP, Edwin Mulitalo, Shaun McDonald, Dan Campbell or Daniel Bullocks, to play in next week's exhibition opener against the Giants next week. Mulitalo said he'll probably come off PUP early next week, but he's a 10-year veteran so there's no point subjecting him to the grind of camp yet.

• I wouldn't expect cornerback Brian Kelly to play next week either. Kelly missed his third straight day of practice Friday. He had his left knee drained and likely will miss a few more days.

• Leigh Bodden had another interception this morning, giving him at least four so far this summer. He's a good bet to start opposite Kelly when the Lions open the season Sept. 7 in Atlanta.


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