BBAO: 'No sporting clays' in Detroit

June, 15, 2012
6/15/12
8:32
AM ET
We're Black and Blue All Over:

If you really wanted to, you could interpret comments from Detroit Lions coach Jim Schwartz on Thursday as a shot at the way some other NFC North teams scheduled out their minicamp and offseason this spring. But to me, it was more of an honest assessment of what the Lions needed than anything else.

To be clear, this wouldn't have been the right year for Schwartz to take the Lions on an off-field "team-building" expedition. After the kind of offseason they have had, it might have looked bad to send them off to shoot skeet rather than practice on the field.

Here's what Schwartz said after the Lions' final day of minicamp, via Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press: "We had no sporting clays today or no amusement parks or water. Work day of minicamp. … We take a lot of pride in the fact that we play for a blue-collar town and we try to reflect that kind of work ethic, and we have very few opportunities to practice this off-season. Ten OTAs, one minicamp and we talked in the beginning, every one was crucial and couldn't afford to waste any of them. And that's our point as a team. … These guys will get out of here later tonight, some of them out tomorrow, maybe after the weekend. Some guys are staying in town. But they have plenty of time to enjoy the rest of their summer before they get to training camp. Today was a work day for us."

The Green Bay Packers, of course, spent Wednesday at a clay pigeon range rather than on the practice field. File that under the category of every team needing something different. I don't have a problem with coach Mike McCarthy's decision there, based on the Packers' offseason, and surely Schwartz made the right call for his team as well.

Continuing around the NFC North;

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