Lions head coach Dan Campbell to miss rookie minicamp due to personal issue

Lions head coach Dan Campbell will not be at Allen Park for this weekend's rookie minicamp.
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The Detroit Lions will have their rookie minicamp over the next three days, as their draft picks, undrafted rookie signings and first-year players coming in for a tryout come to work at Allen Park. But there will be a notable absence.

According to Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press, Lions' head coach Dan Campbell will miss rookie minicamp due to an undisclosed personal reason. Justin Rogers of the Detroit News reported Campbell would miss at least the start of rookie minicamp, but ultimately that may be a minor distinction that makes no difference.

Birkett further reported Campbell is expected to be back with the team later this month.

After rookie minicamp Friday-Sunday, the Lions will next convene for full squad OTAs from May 21-23. More OTA workouts will also take place May 29-31 and June 10-12, with mandatory minicamp from June 4-6.

Dan Campbell to miss Lions' rookie minicamp

Campbell has assembled a coaching staff filled with former players, including at least two future NFL head coaches. So rookie minicamp will be in capable hands whoever is running the show in the head coach's place. But it's surely disappointing for those incoming rookies, whatever their status (draft pick, UDFA, tryout) to have to postpone the opportunity to work with their head coach.

Campbell would surely like to be there this weekend. He connects with players in a way few coaches seem to, and at the NFL owners' meetings in March (h/t to Rogers) he was eager to start putting the NFC Championship Game loss to the 49ers behind them starting right off the bat with the offseason program.

"I think we’ve got to put a tremendous amount of stress on our players before the season gets here, starting in OTAs, but then certainly in training camp, a lot more than we have and just mold them and shape them and get them there," Campbell said. "That experience is going to, it’ll play well to us. Because look, you’re either going to get better from it or you’ll just get worse because you’re broken."

"We’re not going to break. We’re just not. We've got too good of guys, so it’s exciting."

In other news Friday morning before rookie minicamp, the Lions announced the signing of their four Day 3 draft picks: Giovanni Manu, Sione Vaki, Mehki Wingo and Christian Mahogany.


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