Dan Campbell ‘would not be shocked’ if any of the Lions linebackers start in Week 1

Prior to Monday's training camp practice, Dan Campbell raved about the Detroit Lions linebackers.

As Detroit Lions fans know all too well, the team's linebacker department has been a recurring issue in recent years. However, the wind seems to have shifted, as Lions' Head Coach Dan Campbell expressed high confidence in the current linebacker lineup during day two of the training camp.

Dan Campbell Detroit Lions linebackers

Dan Campbell ‘would not be shocked' if any of the Lions linebackers start in Week 1

Campbell told reporters he wouldn't be surprised if any of the linebackers started in Week 1. This apparent ambiguity wasn't due to a lack of quality but rather an abundance of it. The coach lauded the players, including Malcolm Rodriguez, Derrick Barnes, Jack Campbell, and Alex Anzalone, and admired their competitive spirit and dedication to improvement.

“I mean, that the nature of that room and the competition that's in there and knowing the players,” Campbell said. “Man I'm just going I wouldn't be shocked if Rodriguez is starting game one. That wouldn't shock me. It wouldn't shock me Barnes does wouldn't shock me off the pup (Jack Campbell) does, it wouldn't shock me if, you know, Alex is. I mean, it's a good room. So, you know, we'll let them duke it out. And the good news is they're all competitive, you know, they don't sulk they don't worry about it, they just go to work.”

“Barnes has made big jumps, you know, here we go. He's year three, and he continues to just get better. And then Alex as steady as he's he's been you know, and it's it's a good room. then we get Germ (Jalen Reeves-Maybin) back. I mean, we go out there in seven on seven, Germ gets a pick, you know it ricochets. He's a ball guy, you know, he's like a magnet. So it's good to have him back in special teams. Pittman, another guy he's been steady for us and does a lot of jobs. It's a good group, it's a real good group.”

Campbell is loving him some Campbell

The Lions head coach especially raved about rookie linebacker, Jack Campbell.

“Yeah, I don't think keeping him (Jack Campbell) locked in is gonna be an issue. Because he, yeah, he's kind of wired that way. He, you know, to that point, he's, you know, he can kind of self diagnose pretty quickly. Anything he doesn't know he can, he's not going to make that mistake again, which that's a great trait to have. That's how you develop quickly. But, you know, I would just say this there again, it is early, but from spring to even yesterday, he just slowly improves, you know, I mean that in a good way. It's just, he gets a little bit better, picks something else up, has a little more level of awareness and that's good.”

Jack Campbell Dan Campbell Detroit Lions Kelvin Sheppard Detroit Lions training camp

Key Points

  • Detroit Lions' historical struggle with the linebacker position seems to be in a phase of transition.
  • Coach Dan Campbell commends the competitive spirit and improvement of the current linebacker lineup.
  • Players like Rodriguez, Barnes, Jack Campbell, and Alex were singled out for their promising performances.
  • The starting linebacker for Week 1 remains uncertain due to depth and quality in the position.

Bottom Line – The Linebackers are coming!

The future of the Lions' linebacker room is a thrilling prospect, shrouded in uncertainty, but brimming with potential. The vibrant spirit of competition that resonates within the team is an essential aspect of the thrilling game of football. And as we watch this unfold, one thing becomes abundantly clear: under Dan Campbell's guidance, the Lions' linebackers might just rise from being the team's Achilles heel to its shield of strength.