Five thoughts wrapping up 2015 Detroit Lions rookie minicamp

ALLEN PARK, Mich. -- Some thoughts wrapping up the three days of Detroit Lions rookie minicamp.

1. For some, this is it: The end, for most NFL players, comes suddenly and without warning. A cut. An injury. Thinking you’ll pick up a free-agent contract that never comes. For many of the players out there this weekend -- particularly the tryout guys -- this will be the first and possibly last time they will wear an NFL helmet and jersey. There’s a chance that for 30 or so of these guys, this weekend is the last time they’ll ever wear pads. It’s a harsh reality some may not realize, but it’s true.

2. The veteran nickels are making progress: Both Bill Bentley (torn ACL) and Nevin Lawson (dislocated toes) were out for the 2014 season by the end of Week 2, but Lions coach Jim Caldwell said both players have been “active” so far during the first few weeks of workouts. He also said they are making progress but wouldn’t say whether either player will be available for the start of OTAs later this month. If they aren’t, that would open up opportunities for rookies Alex Carter and, more so, Quandre Diggs, to make plays to impress coaches until those two return. The Lions also have veteran Josh Wilson available as a slot corner.

3. Andrew Peacock is making strides: It’s rookie minicamp so there’s not much to glean from it, but wide receivers coach Robert Prince was using Peacock as his example guy for individual drills Sunday. It could mean nothing, because Peacock is the only returning receiver at rookie minicamp, but worth noting he was first in a lot of drills during the individual period. After camp ended, Caldwell said Peacock was someone who “keeps working hard” and is consistently looking for some sort of edge.

4. Caldwell liked what he saw: Caldwell consistently mentioned he liked what he saw with the learning curve of both the signed rookies and the tryout players throughout the past three days, calling their work ethic “strong” over the three-day period. Caldwell indicated the Lions are going to consider signing some of the tryout guys in the next few days, saying they’ll “talk about it.” In fact, the Lions already signed safety Nathan Lindsey and wide receivers Erik Lora and Jarred Haggins on Sunday.

5. Isaiah Johnson has a chance: With James Ihedigbo sitting out some of the voluntary workouts, that will give other players opportunities to pick up snaps and also possibly make a run at roster spots. While Isa Abdul-Quddus would likely slide into a starter role next to Glover Quin until Ihedigbo returns, Caldwell said it will give extra snaps to Johnson.

“James has been a significant contributor for us,” Caldwell said. “He’s a talented guy that had one of his best years ever last year. So not minimizing what he’s done. He’s a talented guy. But does Isaiah have an opportunity? Yeah. As a matter of fact, he gets a few more reps now, so he’s got to take advantage of that.”