Here are some notes, quotes and topics from the Lions’ locker room ...
Could opponents faking injuries really hurt the Lions?
A hot topic around the NFL this week has been players faking injuries on defense to slow an opposing offense as they use a high tempo to march down the field.
This is something that can negatively impact the Lions, who constantly preach a high-tempo pace in their offensive attack and commonly use the no huddle to keep defenses on their heels.
Luckily for the Lions, the NFL sent a memo to all 32 teams explaining that if a player is identified as faking an injury with the intent to gain a competitive advantage against their opponent, the team – not the player – could face disciplinary action.
Good news for the Lions.
“I’m glad they did that,” said Lions receiver Nate Burleson. “We try to keep a high tempo pace on offense and we would hate to get slowed down by somebody doing that.”
Keiland Williams sees his first action
The Detroit Lions acquired 5-11, 230 pound running back Keiland Williams through waivers prior to the start of the season.
Williams is an intriguing player to many following the Lions because he adds an element of power while still having some speed and agility.
After the game was out of reach, the Lions put Williams in the backfield against the Kansas City Chiefs last Sunday.
With the Chiefs prepared to stop the run, Williams was at a disadvantage but still managed a couple impressive runs. He finished with nine carries for 25 yards and a touchdown.
Williams still has a lot of work ahead of him – primarily in learning the Lions’ playbook – if he wants to have a chance at being Jahvid Best’s primary backup.
“I still have a lot of growing to do with this offense,” said Williams. “I made a couple of mistakes out there… I just need to get more comfortable with the offense so I’m not thinking out there, I’m reacting.”
Williams has a lot of the skills and characteristics the Lions are looking for in a running back and if Jerome Harrison is not able to be more productive in his role, Williams may get a chance in the future.
He just needs to be ready when they call his number.
Burleson’s message gets through
One of the team’s most vocal leaders is Nate Burleson.
The veteran receiver can frequently be seen smiling, laughing and joking with teammates.
He loves what he does and thoroughly enjoys himself but that does not discredit his competitiveness, work ethic and desire to win.
Burleson came to the Lions as a free agent in 2009 expecting to help the long-suffering franchise develop into contenders.
Last season, as the team began to turn the corner, he delivered a message to his teammates.
“I mentioned to the guys last year, towards the end of the season when we were getting on the win streak, 'don’t wait for the next team to tell you that they are the great story,'" said Burleson. 'Make it our story, make it right now.'
"You don’t want to be a guy who didn’t give all you got and then you’re on another team or your career is over and then someone else has that break out year and they create something new. Right now we have a chance to do that.”
So far, it seems like the team heard Burleson loud and clear.