A huge factor for the Lions this preseason is the development and chemistry of the offensive line.
When I look back at that position group during the first preseason game, what sticks out to me is commitment. Watching the guys talking with the coach in the bench area, they were serious about what was going on – there wasn't any joking around, which you see a lot of the time during the preseason.
The offensive linemen were very much in tune with the objective - learning to play as a unit, which I believe extends to the running backs.
As a wide receiver, I understand the emphasis placed on rapport with the quarterback and see it as equally important that the offensive line gel with the running backs.
The preseason allows both groups to get to know each other's strengths and weaknesses, and adjust accordingly.
Running backs will learn how to help a lineman that may not be as good at pulling or that may need a little extra time to get around the corner to pick up a block.
Linemen will learn that some running backs don't need as big a hole to run through while others need a much wider hole.
Looking back at my time with Barry and the linemen, we all knew that it wasn't so much about needing to block a particular person as much as it was that we each had someone to block. Occasionally, there was one guy we would let go, because we would call that "Barry's guy" – he had to make him miss.
Figuring out those nuances is what the preseason is for.