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Stock Down: LaAdrian Waddle
As a rookie in 2013, LaAdrian Waddle stormed onto the scene after repeated injuries to the Detroit Lions starters. He legitimately played better than any other rookie offensive tackle that year and looked to be a future star for the team. Then the injuries started to take hold. Waddle missed an incredible amount of time in 2014, leaving another UDFA in Cornelius Lucas to take his place.
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Lucas was really bad, but Waddle didn’t fare much better when he finally got back onto the field (briefly). He suffered more injuries and the team’s offensive line was a complete mess in 2014. Coming back healthy was important this season since the team failed to address the position in the draft or free agency. He continued to get and remain injured for most of the year, but the disturbing part is what happened when he finally got healthy.
After watching some of the worst offensive tackle play I can remember seeing from players in a Detroit Lions uniform by Cornelius Lucas, LaAdrian Waddle saw himself plunged back into an offensive disaster and not only floundered but drowned completely. He was so bad that he was ultimately benched for Michael Ola, a 6’4″ undrafted free agent in his 4th year, signed off the street. Ola hasn’t been good, but he’s been a normal kind of bad, and that’s a huge improvement from whatever we were seeing from Waddle.
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