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O'HARA: Notable developments from Lions' first preseason game

Kenny Golladay passed the eye test – again.

The Detroit Lions' rookie receiver looked good to his teammates the first time they saw him on the practice field after he was drafted in the third round.

"The hands ... the physicality," veteran receiver Marvin Jones Jr. said of his first impression of Golladay after his performance in Sunday's 27-10 road victory over the Indianapolis Colts to start the preseason.

Golladay's play was the notable positive development of the game. He'd said he wanted to take to the game what he'd done on the practice field, and he did just that with three catches, two of them for TDs.

"He definitely passed the eye test," Jones said.

Golladay related what head coach Jim Caldwell had told the receivers before the game.

"Coach said he expects us to get 50-50 balls," Golladay said, referring to balls that are contested by defensive backs. "We have to win those plays."

Golladay was a winner there.

On the negative side, what Caldwell confirmed as a "significant" injury to the left Achilles tendon of defensive end Kerry Hyder Jr. was by far the most damaging development.

The way Hyder worked himself from a defensive tackle on the practice squad in 2015 to a slimmed down defensive end who led the team in sacks with eight in 2016 was one of the team's feel good stories.

Hyder was counted on to start this season opposite 2015 Pro Bowler Ziggy Ansah.

On the fifth defensive play of the Lions' preseason, those plans and hopes for player and team have been drastically altered.

Other notable developments from Sunday center on a review of the draft class and two undrafted rookie free agents, extended work on the offensive line for Greg Robinson and how rookie cornerback Jamal Agnew was stalemated in his bid to showcase his ability to return punts.

The developments, as follows:

On the line: Greg Robinson was the only starter on the offensive line to play the first half at one position. He took every snap at left tackle. Caldwell said that was the plan going in.

Robinson played well. If he can hold up as the replacement for injured left tackle Taylor Decker, the Lions will have solved a crucial problem that threatened to weaken the offensive line.

Rookie review – draft picks:

MLB Jarrad Davis: He didn't make any highlight plays at middle linebacker, but the Colts also had one first down and 31 net yards in the first quarter while he was in the game.

When the defense was on the field during one lull in the game I noticed him swaying to the music booming over the stadium sound system. That's a sign of a young man who likes everything about the experience of playing football.

CB Teez Tabor: He made a good tackle on a running play, and jammed a receiver out of bounds after a catch to hold him to a short gain. He looks like he has football instincts.

WR Kenny Golladay: The numbers – three catches, 57 yards, two TDs -- are worth a thousand words.

TE Michael Roberts: He dropped one ball, and got bailed out on a fumble after another catch when officials ruled his forward motion was stopped. That play still shows up as a negative on video. However, he also stiff-armed a defender out of the way at the end of a 13-yard catch, one of three he had in the first half. There will be some growing pains for the big man.

LB Jalen Reeves-Maybin: Two tackles on special teams indicate he could make an impact there and add depth at linebacker.

DT Jeremiah Ledbetter: He was part of a reserve corps that kept pressure on the Colts quarterbacks in the second half, contributing a quarterback hit and one pass deflection.

DE Pat O'Connor: He also had a sack and showed the same effort he had at Eastern Michigan that caused the Lions to draft him in the seventh round.

Two undrafted free agent linemen showed up. Jeremiah Valoaga had a team-high six tackles, a sack and a pass breakup. Alex Barrett had a sack, two quarterback hits and four tackles.

Bottom line for the young linemen: Regardless of draft status, there's always a place in the rotation for a player who can get to the quarterback.

Agnew's angst: He was back for five punts, but had only one return. He was forced to make three fair catches because of coverage downfield. Another punt bounced at the one and ricocheted out of bounds at the two.

His one return, on a ball he caught on the bounce, was good for seven yards.

Next time.

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