Five keys for Lions as training camp opens
1. Who starts next to Quin?
Lions general manager Bob Quinn highlighted four contenders for the starting safety job opposite Glover Quin. Rafael Bush, a veteran with previous starting experience, enters camp the front-runner, but he’ll have to ward off the challenge of fellow free agent addition Tavon Wilson, hard-hitting rookie Miles Killebrew and former UDFA Isaiah Johnson.
2. How does newest addition fit?
The Lions reportedly added Anquan Boldin to the roster this week, bolstering an increasingly deep and talented receiving corps. Calvin Johnson will unquestionably be missed, but the team has accrued enough weapons to make up for the loss of Johnson’s production. The question is how much does Boldin, who turns 36 in October, have left in the tank.
3. Will Abdullah’s shoulder be an issue?
Running back Ameer Abdullah missed the early portions of offseason workouts while recovering from shoulder surgery, but appears to have dodged a stint on the PUP list to start training camp. The Lions are counting on the second-year back taking on a bigger role in the backfield in 2016, but will also want to ensure he’s healthy heading into the regular season.
4. Will Decker stick on the blind side?
In every practice open to the media so far this offseason, first-round draft pick Taylor Decker has been manning left tackle, with Riley Reiff sliding to the right side. Sure, the Lions could just be exploring what they have in Decker, already knowing what Reiff brings to the table at that spot, but it will be interesting to see if the rookie can hold on to the all-important role.
5. Can an undrafted free agent make the 53-man roster?
Cole Wick, an unheralded tight end out of the University of Incarnate Word, capitalized on increased practice reps during OTAs and minicamp and enters training camp with some momentum. Wide receiver Jay Lee, with his special-teams skill set, will be another one to watch.