Matt Patricia can’t miss anything on the practice field
This week, provided everything goes as planned, the players will actually get on the field and actually perform football activities. The evaluating process will begin and Matt Patricia will have to determine if a player looks good because they are good or because they are only practicing against fellow Detroit Lions.
It sounds funny to say that, but unless you have a team that is stacked with proven talent, then it will be very difficult to really know what you have until the season opens.
This is of course from the standpoint of new players trying to make the team. This coaching staff already knows what they have in returning players like Matthew Stafford, Kenny Golladay, Marvin Jones, Frank Ragnow, Trey Flowers, and Tracy Walker for example.
But without any exhibition games, then every practice will mean that much more for every player on the bubble. Any day without turning a coach’s head is a day that could be the end of their dream.
It could also be a lost opportunity for the Lions as that makes it even more difficult to find any diamonds in the rough.
Training camp is here. Hopefully, in another month the season will be here without any hiccups as we all eagerly await the return of football. Yet beyond that, Matt Patricia and his staff have to be extra vigilant on the practice field. I expect there will be more leniency than the fans want from Sheila Ford Hamp when she evaluates the season after it’s over, but missed opportunities by this regime to identify players that can help this franchise under the current conditions may come back to haunt them.
Every NFL team is coping with the same conditions, but if a whole season is played, then someone will be crowned Super Bowl champions. That means that despite this being such a different year, there are still expectations.
On the outside looking in, the Lions seem to have enough talent to be competitive. Their ability to execute on the field will be a reflection of Matt Patricia’s coaching. But fielding the best team possible will also be a reflection on Patricia as well as Bob Quinn.
In a year where the opportunities are minimalized, Matt Patricia will have to have eagle eyes and a keen roster strategy to make sure he misses nothing on the practice field or assembling his team.