ALLEN PARK, Mich. -- I took in most of the Detroit Lions' two training camp practices Monday, surpassing my 2009 total and matching what I saw in 2008. And the best news yet: I'm back for more on Tuesday!
My official Lions "Camp Confidential" report isn't scheduled to post until Saturday, but the blog will feature heavy Lions emphasis through my Wednesday departure. If there's something you want me to check out, just let me know. Otherwise, you're left to my whims and personal biases.
Ok, enough chit-chat. Here are some first-day impressions from Allen Park:
Tight end Brandon Pettigrew, activated from the physically-unable-to-perform (PUP) list Sunday, participated in the less-physical afternoon practice wearing a brace on his knee. Pettigrew looked, well, like a player trying to run with a brace on his knee: Not smooth, but not unexpected. I would be really surprised if he is on the field for Tuesday's full-pads practice.
The Lions activated defensive end Jared DeVries from the PUP list, and DeVries mostly worked with the second team at left end. Cliff Avril continued getting most of the first-team work there, but I would imagine DeVries will be rotating with Avril before too long.
I planned to take a look at middle linebacker DeAndre Levy, but he sat out both practices because of what coach Jim Schwartz said was continuing back tightness. Levy's absence emphasized the Lions' shaky depth at the position; special teams player Vinny Ciurciu was the first-team middle linebacker in both practices.
The morning practice featured an entertaining red-zone session in which the defense more than held its own. But the offense triumphed on one play in particular: Fullback Jerome Felton's steamroll of safety Marquand Manuel at the goal line. Meanwhile, quarterback Matthew Stafford misfired on two red-zone passes. One appeared to be a miscommunication with receiver Calvin Johnson and another pass was a step behind receiver Nate Burleson.
Schwartz indicated he is being extra cautious with safety Louis Delmas, who is recovering from a groin strain. Delmas is a "known quantity," Schwartz said, and the Lions' only goal is to get him healthy -- not back out on the field. Delmas said: "Everybody that I'm playing with, we all got a good understanding of each other. When I get back, I think I'll be able to adjust to them really fast." Schwartz has been rotating safeties during camp, and Monday his first-teammers were Marvin White and C.C. Brown.