Detroit Lions rookie OG Jonah Jackson ran with the 1’s on the first two days of training camp after Patricia called it a rotation. What’s really going on?
There really isn’t, and I mean like really isn’t, a whole lot of insight you should be taking from Detroit Lions‘ training camp practices. At least the ones with media access.
Think about how much insight you should take from a preseason game and divide that by 10. That’s how much insight these media accessible ‘practices’ will have into the regular season product.
One situation that will get me curious though is a Lions’ rookie third-round pick offensive lineman running with the first team on day one of padded camp. You then have my full attention when he comes out again with the first team again on day two.
That’s the reality in Allen Park this week with a third-round pick in offensive guard Jonah Jackson. Even after head coach Matt Patricia tried to play it off to reporters like a guard rotation on Monday after day one, per MLive.com.
"“Really, Oday [Aboushi] and Kenny [Wiggins] and those guys have been working through there previous to getting out there today, so it’s kind of just a rotational thing that wound up being the first day of pads.”"
I don’t believe Jackson is out there primarily with the first-team the first two days of padded practice for any other reason than the Lions think (or maybe more hope at this point) he’s the best option at guard, and in a shortened training camp and they need to get him all the reps possible with the players he will be playing next to when it counts in three weeks.
More so than any other position group, the offensive linemen have to be on the same page. There is a lot of communication involved playing in the trenches on offense and it can take a while for a rookie to get on the same channel as his teammates.
If this were a normal offseason it might have taken Jackson a couple of weeks to get consistent first-team reps, but most of us knew he had a great shot at starting by week one of the regular season.
The difference in 2020 is it’s day one of padded practice and we are already a couple of weeks into where a normal training camp would be and only a couple of weeks away from the start of Week 1 versus the Bears. There is no time to ease in a rookie offensive lineman expected to start that game.
Now I’m sure they’ll rotate Kenny Wiggins, Oday Aboushi, and others in with the first-team throughout camp as well. They’ll probably give Jackson snaps at left guard, maybe even backup center, but no matter what Patricia tells the media … one of those guard spots is Jonah Jackson’s to lose right out of the gate.