Good turnout at Lions workouts but no Suh

ALLEN PARK, Mich. -- Players roamed through the Detroit Lions practice facility Monday afternoon during the first day of the offseason workout program, some meeting with coaches, others having their hands scanned for access to certain restricted areas of the building.

And on this mostly clerical day, a lot of players chose to show up. At least one did not.

Defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh, who is entering the final season of his contract, was not at the team's opening meeting according to wide receiver Jeremy Ross. That Suh wasn't in attendance should not be a major cause for concern, though, as Suh often works out meticulously on his own and has not shown up at the facility for workouts other times in the past.

Players, though, don't seem concerned about other players not being in attendance.

"As long as everybody is getting better, where ever they are at, it doesn't necessarily matter," defensive tackle Andre Fluellen said. "It's just all about helping the team and some people may have another way that they feel like they can help the team. So as long as it's helping the team, it doesn't matter."

One player who was in attendance, though, was his partner on the defensive line, Nick Fairley.

Detroit general manager Martin Mayhew said at the owner's meetings last month the team would not pick up Fairley's fifth-year option and that he was hoping this would be motivation for the former first round pick to have a strong 2014. As the defensive tackle hustled out of the facility past reporters, he looked somewhat leaner than he did last season.

The Lions couldn't do much on their first day in Allen Park, though. They had a meeting with new head coach Jim Caldwell that backup quarterback Dan Orlovsky deemed "good."

Ross said Caldwell focused on his vision and his goals along with building team chemistry during his chat with the team. Some of those goals were obvious, like winning games and both the NFC and Super Bowl.

"This is what is essential to be able to get there, like team chemistry and building with each other," Ross said. "Limited penalties, limited mistakes. Pretty much the common spiel."

The players were also able to get a workout in and most were out of the facility by the middle of the day.

"Just kind of being together," defensive tackle Andre Fluellen said. "It's kind of different working out on your own and being here together. That's pretty much the only thing. Hopefully the ones that may or may not have been here I'm sure will be here shortly."