DETROIT LIONS DAILY UPDATE FOR SEPTEMBER 5, 2007

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TODAY'S NEWS

  • The Lions practiced on the outdoor fields in shells (helmets and shoulder pads) today at the team headquarters and training facility in Allen Park.
  • The team annouced today that they have signed LB Buster Davis to their practice squad. Davis was drafted by Arizona in the third round of the 2007 NFL Draft (69th overall). He was released by the Cardinals September 2.
  • The following players were listed on the Detroit Lions practice report today: QB Dan Orlovsky (toe) did not participate in practice; FB Jon Bradley (shoulder), RB Kevin Jones (foot) and Shaun Rogers (knee) had limited participation in practice today.
  • The following player was listed on the Oakland Raiders practice report today: LB Isaiah Ekejiuba (foot) is out.
  • The Detroit Lions travel to McAfee Coliseum to open up the regular season against the Oakland Raiders on Sunday, September 9 at 4:15 p.m. The Lions hope to begin their season with a win after going 2-2 during the preseason. This week's matchup marks the tenth regular season meeting between the two teams, and the first since the Lions won 23-13 at Ford Field in 2003. The game will be televised in Metro Detroit on WJBK-TV FOX Channel 2 with Matt Vasgersian handling play-by-play, J.C. Pearson adding color commentary and Jennifer Hammond reporting from the sidelines. The game will also be broadcast on the Lions Radio Network (WKRK 97.1 FM) with announcer DanMiller handling play-by-play, Jim Brandstatter adding color commentary and Tony Ortiz reporting from the sideline.

LIONS HEAD COACH ROD MARINELLI
Opening Statement: “Just limited (participation): Jon Bradley, but he practiced; Kevin Jones practiced; Shaun Rogers practiced. Dan Orlovsky did not participate, but he’s coming along fine.”

On whether he knows who will start at QB for the Raiders: “No, but the thing I keep saying is that they’re both two really good veteran quarterbacks. They’re both mobile; they both run the boot to our left; they both set the ball in the pocket; they clash to our left. It’s not like one is mobile and one is not mobile or one is left handed and one is right handed. There are a lot of similarities as you prepare – good players.”

On whether he spoke with QB Josh McCown before he left Detroit: “Oh yeah. I just wished him the very best. He’s a good guy. He did a lot for us here; he was as positive as you could be all the way through our season. (It was) a tough year and he was great. When he left I wished him the very best. He’s a good guy – a good guy in this league.”

On whether McCown was frustrated that he wouldn’t be a starter as long as Kitna was healthy: “Oh, yeah. You know he was classy about it all the way. He was an awesome teammate here; he was an awesome Detroit Lion. When he left, I just wished him the very best. He’s good for football. He’s a good guy and a good player.”

On the arrival of practice squad LB Buster Davis: “I was pretty direct. I said it’s not good that (you’re) a first day pick and you’re sitting in my office here. He took it the right way and that’s humbling. I really liked him coming out (of college) a lot. He’s got a lot of the stuff you like. He’s like Ernie (Sims) a little bit; he’s got good instincts and awareness. I want to revive his career right now – let’s get going. I’m excited about him. He’s 5’9 243 pounds – he’s loaded. He’s always been a load and he’s really quick, really quick; that’s the thing that attracted us to him during the evaluation before the draft. He’s got that awareness, that instinct you know; he’s a real smart guy. We’ll get him out there and we’ll just work him; get him down to about 230.”

On why Davis was released from Arizona: “You know, the only thing we talked about, he said he was playing – and like I said, I don’t like excuses – and he said learning the system and whatever. But that’s behind him and let’s see what he’s got here. I like him. I liked him pre-draft; I really did. So we’ll see.”

On releasing LB Johnny Baldwin: “We tried to hold on as long as we could. He was the same type of guy, a little bit bigger though, but fast. I think we might have found a guy we like too.”

On keeping Baldwin on the practice squad or whether he got other offers: “Yeah, he did. It wasn’t like they were beating his door down.”

On Raider’s Head Coach Lane Kiffin picking his brain in Tampa Bay: “Oh yeah, he was down there all the time. You know Kiff, he’s always around. The thing I like about Lane is (that) he’s been brought up in football his whole life. His dad, I don’t think he’s ever slept in his bed at home. He’s always on the couch at work; he loves football, his dad. That’s what Lane has been brought up in, that type of work ethic. He’s got a great work ethic for football. You know the normal dinner over at Kiff’s is everybody’s in their stance under the table. That’s what I love about Kiff.”

On whether he was surprised that Lane Kiffin was named head coach at 31 years old: “You know what, I think everybody was. But he’s got that ‘it’ factor. He’s got it. If you’re 30 or 80, he’s got it. He’s done a heck of a job with that group. You know, he’s got the energy too. He relates very well with players, because he likes it so much. You know, he really likes football.”

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