Those lucky enough to join the Detroit Lions open training camp this week were probably fixated on…
Mariucci Wants Williams To Hit Ground Running
Former University of Southern California receiver Mike Williams, the 10th overall pick in this year's NFL draft, agreed to terms on what ESPN.com reported as a five-year, $13 million deal with $10 million in guarantees and was en route from his home just outside Tampa, FL.
Lions coach Steve Mariucci was upbeat about Williams' impending arrival at training camp but indicated the rookie would have a busy schedule over the next few days.
When asked what he could do to get Williams up to speed, Mariucci replied, "We can get him signed today, get him working, get him on the field, get him into the meetings and roll up our sleeves and get the work done. That's all we can do."
He also indicated that the team intended to get Williams some work with one of the backup quarterbacks when special teams work out this afternoon. Then Williams would have to jump right into classroom sessions this evening.
The coach said the team would be doing play installations tonight and then went on to explain what that entailed.
"The four installations that I referred to, for the most part will be review from mini camp, so he has been exposed to most of that. But the volume is that its all there and we're going to move on and install new again tomorrow night. He's just got to study it again. We're going to test our players on the first four installations--they'll get an 'SAT exam' tonight," the coach joked. "He's going to have to take that and see if he remembers anything."
Finally, while he never likes a holdout, Mariucci was understanding that it was just part of the business of football.
"None of us like a holdout," said Mariucci. "Never will, alright? Because you want everybody working the same amount of hours and all of that, but we all understand that sometimes it happens, particularly with a number one pick. Sometimes with a free agent veteran or a guy that's tendered, you know, sometimes that happens. We'd like to minimize [holdouts] which we have."
The signing of Williams leaves just kick returner Eddie Drummond left out of camp. Drummond is seeking a long term deal and has been advised by his agent Drew Rosenhaus to hold out.
The Lions are likely wary of Drummond's injury history - he has never completed a full season in his three years in the league. The two sides appeared close to an agreement early last week before Drummond's camp reportedly backed away from a rumored four-year deal.
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