Off and running: The Lions are expected to be explosive with all the skill position weapons they have back. Some familiar faces made a couple big plays during the Lions' first padded practice Monday. Wide receiver Marvin Jones Jr. split two defenders for a long touchdown from quarterback Matthew Stafford in a 7-on-7 period. Later on, wide receiver Kenny Golladay went up over cornerback Justin Coleman and safety Tracy Walker for a touchdown in the back of the end zone from Stafford in a team red-zone period.
It's good to see two of Detroit's top receiving weapons on the outside getting into the end zone on the first day of practice. Stafford looked very sharp on both throws, and really all throughout practice.
Back in the mix: Head coach Matt Patricia has ditched the ATV and the walking boot from last season and was back in the mix in practice. Patricia really seemed to be in his element during pass rush drills between the offensive and defensive linemen, critiquing technique and showing guys what he wanted to see.
Training wheels: Just like the Lions did with first-round pick T.J. Hockenson a year ago early on in camp, the Lions eased this year's No. 3 overall pick, cornerback Jeff Okudah, into the mix. He was playing mostly with the second-team defense during the first day of padded practice. The same thing happened with Hockenson last year playing behind the veteran Jesse James early on. Desmond Trufant and Amani Oruwariye got a lot of the first-team reps Monday. But just like we saw with Hockenson last year, Okudah is likely to quickly start getting more and more reps with the first-team.
Cross training: There was a lot of cross-training going on along the offensive line during Monday's practice. That's to be expected as coaches try to find their best combinations upfront. For example, Tyrell Crosby played right tackle and right guard during portions of practice. Rookie third-round pick Jonah Jackson played with the first-team offense at right guard, and also played some center with the reserve units. Kenny Wiggins played both guard and center.
First O-line group: I expect the Lions to mix and match upfront throughout camp, especially early on, but the first o-line on the field with Stafford in the first team drill was Taylor Decker (left tackle), Joe Dahl (left guard), Frank Ragnow (center), Wiggins (right guard) and Halapoulivaati Vaitai (right tackle). Jackson subbed in at right guard as well.
Pass-rush standouts: A few names that stood out to me watching offensive and defensive line pass rush drills were: Defensive tackle Nick Williams, Dahl and Decker. Rookie edge rusher Julian Okwara had a nice rep against Crosby, showing some quickness off the edge.
Run it out: We can expect mistakes early in camp. There were a number of false starts on the offense Monday. The penalty for a false start is a run around the field. Golladay and Jones jumped on the same play and had to run. A fumbled snap between Wiggins and backup quarterback David Blough resulted in a run for those guys as well.