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Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Preseason Game 1 thoughts

I was going to review the game in detail but I can see now I won't have time this week, instead of waiting I'm going to post some thoughts on the game now...

First, Atlanta played that game without two guys who were injured, the Lions played without these guys (and how I believe they land on the non-existant depth chart):

RB Maurice Morris (2nd string)

WRs Calvin Johnson (starter), Bryant Johnson (starter), Dennis Northcutt (starter at slot), John Standeford (fighting to make roster over a handful of guys)

TEs Brandon Pettigrew (starter), Casey FitzSimmons (fighting to make roster over Gronkowski)

OL Dyland Gandy (fighting to make roster over a couple players), Kirk Barton (not likely to make final roster)

DT Grady Jackson (starter, or at least in rotation at DT)

LB Jordon Dizon (2nd string), Zack Follett (fighting to make roster over a couple players)

S Louis Delmas (starter), Marquand Manuel (2nd string or possible starter), Daniel Bullocks (2nd string or possible starter)

CB Keith Smith (2nd string or possible nickle or even a starter if Henry moves to Safety)

That's 7 or 8 starters they went without, a third of the team!

Of those, only the Bullocks injury could be season threatening (so I believe at this point anyway).

Health will play a critical role in how well the Lions do this season. Of course, that's no different then any other season or any other team, but I said it anyway.

Okay, so I replayed a part of the game, I must say in that opening offensive series for the Lions, that was some of the best play out of Raiola I've seen in years. I don't know (yet) if he did that well all game, or if he can be counted on to do that well all season, but if he can then I will owe him a big apology... and I will owe the previous coaching staffs another bad mark for using him wrong.

I did watch the whole game (live, well, tape delayed, at full speed) once and had some other observations. With the first 3 wide receivers out of the lineup the rest of the pack had a perfect opportunity to show their worth in a game situation to help them make the team. I did not notice anyone flash out of the whole group. Now, I would normally want to review the game using slo-mo and rewind here and there to get more detail, but just going by the once over method, the players didn't "get'r done". I had high expectations for Colbert, but of the group he failed to impress. Having said that though, you don't take the playing time for part of one game and call it SO! There was 2 weeks of practice film prior to the partial game Colbert and the rest played in, and that does count in the coaches review of the players when cut down day arrives. I did see 3 Lions practices and in those Colbert was not the Colbert in game 1 of preseason. So, did he just have a bad day, or is he unable to translate what happens at practice to game day? That is critical to know. All I can say is, the pressure is now on, he must NOT do this poorly next preseason game or he may not recover his chances to remain on the team. Sippio, who did look terrible in the practices I saw, has already been cut. Colbert can not have any more "bad days" if that is indeed what it was. The same goes for the rest of the WR corp. Time to shine, if you are still on the roster by game 2, you may never see game 3 unless you do what you have to do, and the #1 thing a wide receiver has to do is CATCH THE BALL. There is also blocking, and special teams, route running, lining up correctly and all that... but catching the ball is and always will be the number one thing you do as a wide out.

The OLine in not yet set, and they obviously haven't jelled. Plus they haven't had live play yet to get coached by the new coaches on what they did wrong. So, for them, it'll be important to show who can learn and be coached and improve. The same exact thing goes for the DLine. Those that can be coached up and learn will stick, those who can not will be gone (except for Goz, his guaranteed money means he has a roster spot, period). No one, as in you or me or anyone else, should be under the delusion that the OLine and DLine are going to be okay. They were not addressed much in 2009 while other areas were. Right or wrong that is what happened. But these players do have new schemes and new coaches to help them improve. If they do, the team improves. However well the two lines play will determine how well the Lions do in 2009. We all know that (or should know that). We just need to remember that. The coaches meanwhile need to sort out the players and keep the best ones, and not get it wrong, to speed up the team building process. We mustn't lose sight of that. Next year upgrading the lines can become paramount, this year is about instituting the schemes, coaching those who can improve, and seeing what you have to work with for next season. It's not an excuse, it is a necessary step in fixing a really broken team.

Some other things I noted...

Stanton showed great poise when he got the team in field goal range and had to spike the ball to stop the clock. He did not panick and spike it too quickly, but rather took his time and waited the clock out to make sure that Jason would drain the clock with his field goal attempt. I was quite impressed with that poise.

While most say that Stanton won the game, you could also argue that the blocked extra point was the game. After all, the Lions won by 1 point. That was the special teams game ball play of the game.

Stafford showed some nice look offs and pump fakes. I was impressed with that more so then the throws, he is known far and wide for his arm, it's the rest of the stuff I questioned (both the if he can do it and when will be ready to do it questions). So far so good with the exception of the poor decision to throw a pick six. A rather big exception, but unless it becomes a very nasty habit, nothing to worry about just yet.

Culpepper meanwhile showed that he is regaining his old form. Give him CJ on that first long throw instead of the (at best) 4th string WR and maybe that bomb is a TD and his entire tenure in the game looks quite brilliant. I find no fault with the rest of the plays to speak of and it just felt nice to know that a QB that knows what it's all about was in charge at QB.

A few other things that are sometimes forgotten... it was only the first preseason game. There was no game planning. Plays were run at times just to see what would happen. Players were tested just to see what would happen. The full playbook was not used, nor should it be. Oh, and the back flip in the end zone was no worse excessive celebration then diving into the stands in green bay... plus, the RB coach Gash all but dared Brown to do it.

All in all, it was an interesting game. For a 0-16 team though, I think the most important part was that the team did NOT quit fighting and did get the win. Would that have happened with the previous coaching staff? (No is the appropriate answer by the way). And be honest, with the clock ticking down towards the end of the game down by two scores, did you think the Lions were going to end up winning the game?

No, me either.

This is not the 2008 Lions my friends. They may not be ready for post season play just yet, but they are definitely not the 2008 Lions. And that is good to know.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Sunday, August 9th, afternoon (and only) practice.

It’s 97 degrees out. Shade? What shade? I think I’m standing on the sun. How they got bleachers there I’ll never know… and what wrong turn I took to also get there still baffles me. So anyway, its 97 degrees on the Sun and about 1,000 others are there with me and around 80 guys who resemble the 2009 lions.

I have my pad and pen and camera (and backup camera) and realize that writing play by play takes a lot of work, I miss a lot of action, and I don’t even know which method of reporting people like. So I mixed it up today, some of one, some of the other. Hey, it was ON THE SUN and it was HOT, okay?!

First, I’m there early, maybe 15 minutes before practice “officially” starts. Half the team is out there doing stuff. Jason and Nick are kicking to a group of players on one side of one field, the QBs are talking over to the right. There are other groups scattered about doing various things ON THE SUN before practice even starts. Dedicated players they are.

So anyway, the one player I thought I saw practicing catching kick offs was Bullocks. Now I thought he was hurt, and I couldn’t figure out why he was trying his hand at catching kick offs. In fact, it wasn’t until 10 minutes ago that I figured it out. Bullocks is number 27, the number of the player I thought I saw, then I realized a few minutes ago that maybe it was a 21, which would’ve been Aaron Brown, and DING, I figured it out!!! It’s those stupid, retarded, fonts they are using for the numbers. The 1’s look like 7’s. Especially on the Sun!

So, anyway, Bullocks was no where to be seen, but Aaron Brown was practicing along with 5 others before practice started.

So the horn blows, they all start to do their stretching, and I’m wondering if that pool of water by my feet was because they had watered the grass just before I got there, or if I was really sweating that badly. (Turns out… both).

After the stretching, those players still alive took to the fields into their position groups. This time I was nearest the wide receivers. So whoever Ernie Sims growled at today I do not know.

First thing I notice about the WRs is that B. Johnson is there, helping out the coaches with the drills. Most injured players don’t do that… or at least I hadn’t seen it in the past. I thought is was interesting. After a while the QBs quit their drills with their coach and joined the WRs. Crossing route practice ensued. From there various other drills commenced, with a coach here and there flipping over their clipboards from time to time to see what drills they were to cover that day.

As the other position groups finished they joined in, eventually there were fullbacks, tightends, running backs and all those coaches there too. I saw Stafford hitting about 3 out 4 nice throws with the other being quite a bit off (75% isn’t bad though). Culpepper was hitting about the same. Stanton has some work to do still. When they started doing something that looked like a spread offense drill (5 wide, but 1 or 2 might be a RB, or FB, or TE, or combo) the press started to wander over from where they had been. I had never seen this drill before so I’m hopeful someone in the press can fill me in on what I was watching.

When they did some special teams work I noticed that the rest of the players were not drilling… but standing and watching. I took it that the coach was giving them a break since it was so hot and that long hot trip to the sun probably tired them out some. I also noticed that Colbert was playing gunner on special teams. More and more I saw players taking it easy watching this or that drill, I thought it was pretty nice of the coach to only drill some of the team at once and give the other time to acclimate to the conditions on the sun, being none of them were any more used to it then I was.

I saw Salaam get hurt, and Gandy (a center) took his place playing LT. I thought that was odd. But I have checked and I can't figure out how the numbers 6 and 5 could be anything but a 65 even with those horrid fonts. Later I saw Salaam playing again, so it must not have been serious.

They did some kind of 11 on 11 drill. Heller dropped a pass. Someone else then dropped. To the ground. Wet towels were rushed to him, a whole wagon load of gatorade was driven there (where it had to be unloaded so they could load the guy on the wagon to take him inside). He had wet towels draped all over him so I could not tell if it was a player, a coach, or someone from the press (or someone visiting). Never did find out. Stafford then threw a ball that was way off. I think it was way off, maybe someone didn’t go towards Mars when they should’ve, can’t ever be sure of these things. I did see Henry make another defensive play.

Later they worked on punt returns, again resting players not involved. Buchanan was still working punt returns. Then Williams caught one, side note… When he threw the ball back to a coach it was a good 30 yards and he threw a perfect spiral. Can you say “wildcat”? Delmas was watching punt coverage, as was Henry when he joined them… not saying others weren’t watching, but they were on my side of the action watching something specific, and I do not know what. Colbert was again working as a gunner on punt coverage. A bit later Ken Harris took his place to give him a rest. Suddenly someone didn’t get into position and the coach flipped. No more of that drill. He was hot!!! Of course, he was on the Sun, so what do you expect, but still, that player must have really done a no-no!

Later on, Levy made a nice move on D to break up a Stanton pass. Then I think I passed out… as I recall picking on the Killer for a minute or two, and he picking on me, then next thing I know practice is over. ¾ of the people never made it that far, so the lineup for autographs was short, and most of the players probably appreciated that. Some still came over to sign or talk, including Larry Foote, Gronkowski (he was actually first over), and some others who’s names I didn’t write down but pictures I have. They will be up later, if I can get either camera working again. They do not like the Sun.

For that matter, neither do I… at least… not visiting it.

Ps. On the way home I think I drove through a tornado. The car tried to take flight into a field quite suddenly, but I managed to stay on pavement. A bit up the road there were trees down blocking one lane or the other, leaves and twigs and branches everywhere, several of those very large very heavy signs that light up were upside down, one smashed to very small pieces, and right after that was a truck with a chain trying to pull a full sized tree off the expressway so everyone could stop having to drive the shoulder to continue on down the road. What a mess. I blamed it all … on the sun. (departs whistling a Stevie Wonder tune).

http://www.elyrics.net/read/s/stevie-wonder-lyrics/blame-it-on-the-sun-lyrics.html

Saturday, August 8th, Ford Field practice.

Day two of my excursion into downtown Detroit brings Lions news that a lot of you may have already heard, or read, or where told about. But since I have nearly 7 pages of notes to type up, I’m going to tell it as I saw it (and as we all know, any two Lions fans watching the same thing can come up with completely opposite views of what they saw).

Got a couple of nice seats around the 25 yard line about row 6 or so, close enough that someone in the row in front of me said something like “good look Ernie” and the entire section was welcomed to an angry look from Mr. Sims who had heard it. (I’m just not sure he heard what was said correctly, in fact I assume he did not.) Ernie Sims is one very intense man. He is full of 0-16 and needs to release it on someone. I pity the poor team he releases all that on.

Turns out that the Commish was there. I thought it great he got to see over 15,000 people show up to a practice for a 0-16 team, most of whom waited in the rain (a heavy rain) to get in. I applaud all who attended. There is no better way to show your support of your team to a guy like Goodell then what happened, especially after the recent past.

I think it impressed coach Schwartz as well. He stated in his address to the attending fans that the commissioner was there and that it would be very wrong to take away the tradition of the Thanksgiving game from the Lions. He used the size of the crowd to support his stance. Now if only he could get BishopDon to shut up about it. (If you don’t know who that is or his stance on this issue, you haven’t spent enough time at the Mlive Lions Forum.)

While the players were warming up, stretching, and what-not, Jason Hanson worked on his field goals using a wire to hold the ball. Basically, he was warming up, in his own way. By my count, he made 4 out of 5 kicks from 53 yards out, and 2 of 3 from 55 yards out. He was not exactly happy with that (but I was).

I saw Cook, Dizon, Fitzsimmons, Pettigrew and Morris there but not participating. There were probably other hurt guys there but they either weren’t visible to me or weren’t wearing their jerseys.

The team broke up into their usual positional groups for drills; in front of me were the linebackers (again) so I watched the defensive line across the field from me. Not going by height, or actual weight, but by appearance, it seems to me that Jackson is the largest dlineman on the team. Second goes to Darby. Third to Ikaika Alma-Francis. And the fourth largest is John Gill. Strongest? Heaviest? Best player? No idea. Wasn’t comparing that. Just the visible size difference as they stood there in a group.

Now the play by play. Due to people leaving their seats and my having to move to allow them through, and due to my camera not cooperating all the time, and answering questions by those around me, I missed some of the plays. So the following is not complete. Not accurate. And when it comes to whether a play failed because of a bad throw, a bad attempt at a catch, or a well defended play… well, that comes down to the interpretation of the viewer. Having said that, this is what (I say) happened… (oh, and trying to keep track of who threw it, who caught or didn’t catch it, and who defended it… ha! (I’m only ONE person.)

In the one-on-one drills:

Culpepper threw to CJ, it was not a catch, very well defended. Kevin Smith dropped a pass. Threw out of bounds to Williams (overthrow). Then Jennings caught a great pass in traffic.

Stafford threw to a TD to Boldin on a great pump fake play. To Fowler a nice catch in stride. Then an incomplete to Sippio who appeared to have run the wrong route. (For sure missed some plays in there)

Stanton overthrew the receiver on the first pass. Dumped off a pass to the RB perfectly. Threw to Williams who slipped and missed the catch.

Back to Culpepper who threw to Jennings for an incompletion. Then Boldin had a nice catch. Sippio in stride. Then a good short pass to Gronkowski.

Stafford to CJ complete in good coverage. To Williams but would need instant replay to see if Williams was inbounds on the catch. To Harris overthrown deep.

Stanton to Boldin who slipped and nearly caught it anyway.

Summary. Nothing great, nothing horrid, and they ALL have a LOT of work ahead of them.

7 on 7 drill….

Culpepper to Kevin Smith nice short pass in stride. Throw 2 was an incomplete (was pass interference by Sims but not called). #3 to Heller for a completion. #4 out of bounds (bad throw, bad route, intentional? No way to know, like I said, it’s that way for any play). #5 to CJ one handed try with good D coverage. #6 had to kneel to set up field goal (the goal of the series of plays was to get in field goal range in so many seconds). A successful series.

Stafford to Cason for short yardage. #2 to Gronkowski incomplete deep. #3 to Colbert, out of bounds (again, throw, route, intentional?). #4 to Gronkowski complete for a first down. #5 to Colbert high and out of bounds. #6 to Gronkowski 1st down. #7 was a spike to stop the clock. 10 seconds remaining… threw another 1st down to Colbert and called timeout for field goal. A successful series.

Stanton to Jennings 1st down. #2 to Heller 1st down. #3 too high for Harris. #4 incomplete by Bodin. 4th down pass #5 for a first down to Jennings. 15 seconds left. Spiked it to stop the clock. #6 overthrown out of bounds. #7 kneel down to stop the clock for a field goal. A successful series.

Special teams then worked out, with Jason getting live action attempts (versus a wire holding the ball as before practice started). He was good from 38, 41, 43, 47, 50, and then 53 yards. Perfect.

Then they went to a live team drill….

Stafford started it with DeVries knocking down his pass. Run play by K. Smith for short yardage tackle by Sims. Complete to Felton (I made some kind of note here about Buchanan that I can not read). Smith had a nice run to the outside. Overthrew a nice pass to Heller deep middle. Felton had a nice run up the middle. (note the use of the fullbacks in both runs and passing? Yeah, me too)

Culpepper to Allen Ervin who caught the dump off pass. Kevin Smith ran hard up the middle. Felton ran up the middle. A nice deep pass to CJ who caught it (but he did push off it was not called). Sippio same play, fell flat trying to catch it. He just wasn’t fast enough.

Stanton hands it to Aaron Brown for short yardage. Naked boot leg, ran it for a few yards. Naked boot leg (faked) it was handed to Aaron Brown who ran into a pile of guys and reversed field for a nice run (haven’t seen that in, oh, about 12 years I’d say). Fowler drops a nice deep pass up the sideline. Aaron Brown worms his way up the middle for a nice gain. Allen Ervin was stopped quick on his run. Darby then stuffed Brown real quick.

From there they took up Kick Off practice…

Buchanan was one of the kick returners. As was Derrick Williams, Dexter Wynn who let it go over his head.. twice (by design?), Ramzee Robinson dropped his, Jennings dropped one. Chris Robinson good.

Now back to team drills…

Culpepper to CJ on a short pass, stopped quick by Henry. Pass #2 would’ve been a sack but Dante completed it to Jennings. #3 was a double blitz (left and right), not picked up, throw to CJ was over his head. Very nice Defensive series. Sammie Hill has his hands on his hips already. (Means he’s tiring). Cason tried a run up the middle, Peterson stopped him. Short pass to Colbert is good. Nice pass to Fowler is good.

Stafford hand it to Aaron Brown who is quick up the middle. Williams caught a short pass as he was wide open. Took exception to the tackle. Didn’t see who the D was, but a small fight broke out between them. Throw to Williams again, it went off his shoulder (consider it a drop, or miss, whatever). To Colbert, nice catch in stride. Appears bigger then he supposedly is. A throw to #46 Carson Butler. Then a nice long pass to Colbert.

Stanton did not play in that series.

New drill. 10 seconds on the clock, 1 time out. 30 yard line. Need a score….

Stafford to Williams… stopped by Ramzee Robinson short. Pass to Jennings incomplete.

Culpepper to Jennings, complete. Pass to Williams is dropped (or just not caught).

Stanton throws it way way way out of bounds. Jennings catches the next for a 1st down, and the only QB to score.

Now the drill is a full team for the full field…

Culpepper to CJ deep, sails over his head as he never saw the ball and wasn’t to the spot. A nice run by K Smith, now 3rd and 3. Sacked by Hill. Time out. Cason runs it, 2nd and 2. (obviously I missed something in this series). CJ wide open for 11 yard catch. Cason up the middle. 2nd and 8. Fluellen at DT, Jason Hunter at DE. Dump pass to Cason for 1 yard, 3rd and 7. Incomplete to CJ, nice Defense.

Stafford hands it to Aaron Brown, stuffed by Levy. 2nd and 10. Incomplete pass, broke up by Robinson. Pass complete to Boldin, 16 yards. 1st down. Aaron Brown for 1 yard, stopped by Levy. Overthrow to Colbert. Incomplete to Fowler, penalty, automatic 1st down. To Colbert incomplete.
Allen Ervin runs for 6. On a high snap in the shot gun he gets it to Colbert for a first down.

Stanton to Harris, through his hands. Aaron Brown gang tackled, 3rd and 6. To Heller who dropped it. To Felton who was hit hard with the tackle. 2nd and 6 after 15 yard penalty. Felton up the middle for 9. Felton hit the defender hard, very loud hit. Throw to Williams 1st down. Incomplete pass to post, not one WR was near it (bad route maybe?). Carson Butler (or was it Felton, stupid fonts for numbers anyway, hard to read) TD.

After the practice I stuck around until they started sweeping. Saw #76 (Jeff Backus) with ice wrapped around his arm (I think it was ice). Saw Loper and Schwartz’s wives and kids (kids were handed over the wall to them). Schwartz stayed and signed autographs and talked to about 2 dozen fans at the end. Finally, Cody Spencer started throwing his clothes into the audience, first his shoes, then his socks, and I think an arm band. Later he was interviewed by the press, then on his way (barefoot) into the tunnel he signed the stuff for the fans who caught it… or maybe he signed footballs, hats and such… couldn’t tell.

And that folks was the way I saw it. (Then a few hours later I saw the Tigers get whipped by the Twins, but man, the fireworks after were something to see! Still have not seen the Tigers win a game when I was in the stadium, do I get more then 3 strikes?)

Friday, August 7, 2009

Friday, August 7th, afternoon practice only.

After nearly 4 hours on the road I (we) made it to Allen Park with 3 minutes to spare. Grabbed the cameras, locked the car, walked with the wife to the end of the parking lot, realized I forgot the wallet, went back to car, got the wallet, locked and caught up with wife on the way to the bleachers to watch the practice already in progress. Then realized I forgot my pad of notepaper and my pen.

So instead of missing more practice I stayed. Big mistake, can’t remember half of what I was going to write. I hate being rushed, too easy to forget things.

Okay, so, the Lions.

I was sitting right in front of where the linebackers were working on individual drills. Off to the right were the tight ends. Off to the left were the running backs. Way way way across the field was the rest of them. (There are 2 football fields there, side by side, and most of the team was on the back (furthest away) field, which was okay for individual drills, but the 7 on 7 drills and all that sucked as far as seeing what was happening goes).

Sims went first on each LB drill. The man is possessed! He is so ready to go hit someone it’s ridiculous. He would hit the equipment like he was trying to destroy it and he didn’t much care. He was definitely the best at squaring up and smacking the heck out of the equipment. Levy twice took two tries to square up for a good solid hit, he would be ranked as the worst of the group (in that one drill, not as the worst LB). Peterson was the most vocal, trying to get the crowd riled up. A regular comedian. Looked right at me when he commented on how hard Sims had hit the sled. “That’s the way you do THAT!”

At one point a guy seated 3 spots over from me said something like “I could do that” (meaning he could drive into the sled like they were) and got a very dirty look from at least 4 of the LBs, including Sims. Thought they were going to come over and drag the dude over to the equipment to see what he could do. I wonder if those guys will make it to the first preseason game before they cremate someone.

Over at the TE area they were working on getting around a guy (one of the coaches) and then rushing a bag (one of those that wobble but do not fall down) smacking it (hard) out of the way and then continuing on. The first TE did it wrong, apparently as the TE goes beyond the bag he is also supposed to whip his other arm around behind him and really smack it again… just as hard. The coach showed them all how to do it again (about 5 times) and after that all I could think about was how much pain they intend to inflict upon the defenders in the route.

This isn’t going to be the mambie-pambie defense that was Barry’s/Marinelli’s. In fact, the entire practice was different, from the stretching to the other warm-ups, from the each of the drills being run to the plays being called in all the team drills. Now I thought last year when I saw them doing Marinelli’s drills they were getting worked hard, I really did (then) but I do not think so any more. Plus they are actually practicing situational play calling… intentionally. Instead of only after the team shows they can’t do something in a game.

There was some special teams practice as well as 7 on 7 and the like... most of which I couldn’t see well from where I was at. So I’m not going to detail every play by every player, or even be able to answer questions about specific players… not yet anyway. (I’m down here for two more days).

I will say that on kick returns #12 Derrick Williams was the quickest, surest handed, and smoothest runner. Cason makes the catching part look like second nature, but then there’s not much there. Aaron Brown can catch, but he isn’t as smooth or as sure handed as the other two. Okay for a backup I believe, but from this one practice I’d say Williams is the kick returner.

I saw the running backs and full backs doing their fair share of catching (yes, I said half backs AND full backs). Also saw the full backs running the ball. Both FBs caught my eye more then once. They have some weapons there and these coaches appear to realize that. I think Aaron Brown takes the #3 spot from Cason. He is just fast. Noted that a couple times before I knew who I was watching. #3 running back and backup kick returner.

CJ when up to speed (which takes one step) can cover 10 yards plus in 3 strides, usually before my mind can tell me that the guy is running. He is huge (compared to, well, anyone else on the team). Then there are the rest of the WRs. Maybe they should break the bricks back out… learn to softly catch the ball and to look it into the hands. More drops then I could count. They have to fix that somehow, quick.

Saw some good plays and some bad plays by just about everyone on the roster, need more info before I comment further on anyone else (and a closer view).

I did meet the Killer. He asked if I had noticed that Henry was practicing at safety all day (never did see much of the DBs from where I was at, so I had not noticed). I told him things were rather quiet as compared to last year, when “working on the chain gang” blared from a rather poor speaker throughout the entire practice, over and over again, for hours, every day. He thanked me for the bad memory. He was in a hurry (presumably to write his “Henry to Safety” article) so we shook hands and continued on from there (he to write, me to get lost in downtown Detroit looking for my hotel, thanks google maps!!!).

That’s all for today, tomorrow it’s the open practice at Ford Field and then one last practice at Allen Park before I head home on Sunday. Hopefully I will not be pressed for time and forget the paper and pen this time.

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