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CAMP SPOTLIGHT: Tackle Penei Sewell


Position: Offensive tackle

Ht/Wt: 6-5/331

College: Oregon

Experience: Rookie

Outlook: Sewell was arguably the best tackle in this year's NFL Draft and one of the best overall players available. Lions general manager Brad Holmes was able to snag him with the No. 7 pick, which is why the cameras caught Holmes so excited after the pick was made.

Sewell slots into the starting right tackle spot and was the final piece to solidify the Lions' offensive line and potentially make it one of the better units in football. Sewell has a terrific blend of power and athleticism, and we've seen the strong movement skills early in training camp.

The pads came on for the first time in camp Tuesday, so we got to see the power element come into play for the first time. Sewell opted out of the 2020 season, so Tuesday was the first time the big man has had the pads on since the end of the 2019 college season.

Practice report: The first good look we got at Sewell was during an early 3-on-3 running period between the offensive and defensive lines. It didn't take long for Sewell to assert himself as he completely wiped out Julian Okwara on one rep. Sewell and Okwara did a little chirping at each other after the rep, too.

Lions head coach Dan Campbell said he was excited to watch Sewell match up against veteran edge rusher Romeo Okwara Tuesday in full pads. The matchup didn't disappoint. Romeo won the first rep with a speed rush on the outside. Sewell came back the next rep and made the adjustment. He stood Romeo up.

In team periods, the two battled a lot of the day with each player having their moments. Romeo had a nice bull rush in one period, and Sewell did a good job picking up a stunt with right guard Halapoulivaati Vaitai to give quarterback Jared Goff some extra time to complete a pass later on.

One thing that stands out about Sewell is the combination of power and movement skills. Getting out in space on screens and getting to the second level looks very easy and very natural to him.

Sewell has made the adjustment to the right side pretty seamlessly and looks like he's going to be a good player for a long time. Going up against Romeo on a daily basis is going to accelerate his learning curve significantly.

Quotable: "It's kind of like when you're out in the desert and you take that first sip of water," Sewell said of putting the pads on. "I would say it's like that. To be out there again and strap on and put the helmet back on again it's a feeling I forgot about. It's something I've been craving for a minute and didn't know I was craving, so to go out there and do the things I love doing, again it's a blessing."

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