5 things we learned about the Lions this week
1. Three members of the 2011 draft class have worked their way out of the Lions’ favor but not off the roster. Marijuana charges for Mikel Leshoure were revealed this week, Nick Fairley was stopped this week in Alabama and cited for marijuana possession and, of course, Johnny Culbreath was charged with marijuana possession in January. All three are expected to step up this season after injuries slowed them down or in Leshoure’s case kept him off the field for his rookie season. Coach Jim Schwartz seems to be a fair guy, but I wouldn’t want to face his wrath if I were one of these three.2. Last summer the Lions didn’t sign LB Bobby Carpenter until camp was under way even though he had played well in 10 games for them in 2010. Carpenter signed as a free agent with the Patriots on Thursday. He was solid on special teams and played well at linebacker when he got his shot. He was an ironman of sorts too, playing in all 16 games last season with three starts. The Lions still have backups Ashlee Palmer and Doug Hogue, but they will miss Carpenter.
3. Gregg Williams revealed himself in a pre-game audio that was released Thursday. The former Saints defensive coordinator was firing up the Saints before the 49ers playoff game, a week after New Orleans had beaten the Lions. I don’t for a moment think that Williams had this history of paying players to knock opponents out of the game, but didn’t use it against the Lions. You know the NFL has folks closely examining every game from last season and the Lions played at New Orleans twice. I don’t think this is nearly over, I think it’s just getting started.
4. If there was a chance the Lions were looking to draft cornerbacks Janoris Jenkins (can’t see it at all) or Dre Kirkpatrick (certainly a possibility) I believe they’ll think twice now. Both have marijuana possession charges on their resume. Kirkpatrick (Alabama) and Jenkins (North Alabama) are considered among the best cornerbacks in the draft but not sure the Lions should take a chance on them in the light of what happened with three draft picks from last year.
5. The Lions’ new Nike uniforms just aren’t much different. But love the new gloves with the Lions logo across the back of both hands.
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