Lions' linebackers coach Kelvin Sheppard made it very clear during the episode about how impressed he has been with Rodriguez so far in camp.
“There ain’t much you can’t do on the field. You got me?” Lions linebackers coach Kelvin Sheppard asked Rodriguez. “I’m telling you right now, this year can be whatever you want it to be. Everything’s open for you right now. You got me? You just gotta go take it and do it.”
Bold prediction based on Episode 2 of Hard Knocks with the Detroit Lions
During a meeting with the linebackers, Kelvin Sheppard raved about how Malcolm Rodriguez was outplaying all of the veterans.
“What do y’all want me to do, put him out there first?” Sheppard asked incredulously. “Because that’s what’s about to happen. This ain’t nothing against you, Rodriguez. Matter of fact, you’re playing your f—— a– off. But this is a rookie, who I’m doing everything I can to not put out there first.
“I’m sick of f—— saying it. He’s in the same f—— drills y’all are in…Keep playing your ass off, dude. And he’s gonna keep climbing the depth chart until somebody decides, ‘I’m not gonna let this rookie take my job…’
“I had a coach that’s been in this building for five years tell me he hasn’t seen a linebacker make that type of play since he’s been here. You all need to know this type of s—. This s— don’t need to be a secret.”
That brings me to the bold prediction that came to me while watching Tuesday's episode of Hard Knocks.
Folks, when the 2022 season begins, rookie Malcolm Rodriguez will be a starting linebacker for the Detroit Lions. And even if the Lions decide to start the veterans, it will be Rodriguez who is among the leaders in total snaps played among the linebackers.
Nation, what do you think?