Detroit Lions Rookie Spotlight

5 Min Read

The Detroit Lions are about to play their second preseason contest, and it is against the Oakland Raiders. Both teams are looking to make a bigger impact on the NFL, and both teams need the live action reps to help them prepare for the season. For the Detroit Lions’ second preseason game, a lot of the rookies should have more opportunities to make themselves known.

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First off is rookie defensive end Larry Webster. Webster was a forced to be reckoned with during his 26 snaps against the Cleveland Browns, a week ago. He had 2 tackles, and one of them was for a loss. Webster also had a hit on the quarterback, which was what he was brought into Detroit to do. Oh yeah, and that quarterback was the rookie hype leader Johnny Manziel. Larry Webster is an athletic freak, and he did not even play much college football. His inexperience is not showing, though. Webster is playing like a natural defensive end in practice, and he could be an “X factor” of sorts for the Detroit Lions’ defensive line.

Rookie safety Jerome Couplin has been earning high marks from the Detroit Lions coaching staff, and from sports media around the nation. He had a few huge hits against Cleveland last week, and is earning the title of a hard hitter. Couplin has showed tremendous awareness flocking to the ball, and the Lions feel really good about having a young kid like Couplin on their roster.

After Jerome Couplin solidified himself as a huge hitter, he started practicing with the second team defense a lot more. Couplin has even earned a new nickname in the Detroit Lions’ camp; the Osprey. This nickname comes from his huge frame at safety. Couplin stands 6-foot-2, 215 lbs, and has a wingspan of 80 inches. Hopefully the Osprey will learn how to be a better pass defender.

All eyes are still on the Detroit Lions’ rookie kicker, Nate Freese. The kicker competition is one that the Detroit Lions are taking very seriously. The kicker is often the last chance at winning a game, and the Detroit Lions have failed to find a great kicker since Jason Hanson retired. Rookie kicker Nate Freese still is not a lock to win the job.

The Detroit Lions are taking their time choosing their next kicker, and they are using unique drills to help them do so. This week, the Lions used high pressure kicking drills to try to determine which kicker was going to be best for high pressure game situations. When the Detroit Lions play the Oakland raiders, it will be interesting to see which kicker gets the first shot at kicking a field goal.

Eric Ebron is the one rookie that the Detroit Lions cannot end up being wrong about. They drafted the talented tight end in the first round of the 2014 NFL Draft. Most Detroit fans could not fathom why the team would pass up help at secondary, and there are still fans that are disgruntled over the pick. Ebron is a great fit for the Detroit Lions’ offense. He has a huge frame, great footwork, and a solid grasp on what it takes to win mentally.

The one thing that Eric Ebron does not have going for him is a great training camp. The first round draft pick has been suffering from drops and other miscues during practice. Eric Ebron should get another chance to show Detroit what he can do against the Oakland Raiders. He needs to show everyone that he can hang on to the ball. Eric Ebron has been the target of tremendous criticism of late, and he needs to prove that the criticism is undeserved.

When the Detroit Lions play the Oakland Raiders, it will be important to see how these rookies all react to the pressure that has surrounded them thus far in their careers. The second preseason game is always a very important contest for rookies. Next week, the starters will play more reps. Week 4, the fringe players will need to show that they deserve to make the cut. For a lot of guys, how they perform in this game against Oakland could solidify their spot on the roster. They may not have too many chances after.

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Posted by Travis Newville
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Freelance editor/writer. Currently writing poetry, song lyrics, children's book, and SEO web content. Content Editor and MMA Analyst for Detroit Sports Nation.