Lions charity golf event to bring players, management together despite lockout
BEVERLY HILLS — For the first time since the NFL lockout started in March, Lions players, coaches and management will be on the same soil.
They will take part in the Detroit Lions Golf Invitational, an annual money-raising event at the TPC Michigan in Dearborn on Tuesday.
Will it be a little strange?
“They realize that’s how it is, we realize that’s how it is. Maybe we can sneak in a secret conversation. Just kidding Goodell, I’m kidding,’’ center Dominic Raiola said referring to NFL commissioner Roger Goodell after Monday’s informal workout.
“I think you can say hi to them. I don’t know how that works. I think team charity events that’s all right,’’ he added.
Since it was the owners who locked out the players, the coaches and management could be more tight-lipped. The players have nothing to lose.
“I don’t think we have any ground rules, I don’t know what the coaches rules are or people in the organization. I guess it will be strange but we’ll see,’’ said Kyle Vanden Bosch who will attend for the lunch only. He’s not a golfer.
“It will be good to see their faces again. I don’t know what we can talk about so it will be a little bit strange,’’ Vanden Bosch added.
Still, credit the players for making an effort to attend.
They could have snubbed their noses at management, but obviously won’t let the lockout get in the way of a good cause.
In its first 20 years, the Lions’ golf invitational raised nearly $6 million for charity.
“Yeah, it’ll be different, but it will be fun as always,’’ quarterback Matthew Stafford said.
The Lions worked out as a team informally on Monday. They didn’t plan a workout for Tuesday because of the golf event. They’ll continue their workouts on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.
(Follow me on Twitter @PaulaPasche.)