When the official roster of the participants at this weekend's rookie minicamp was released by the Detroit Lions, one position that was absent became quite noticeable.
There was not a single quarterback listed among the list of participants, which begged the question: How do you conduct a minicamp without a quarterback?
Lions head coach Dan Campbell, addressing the media ahead of Sunday's final minicamp session, explained the reasoning and how drills were conducted, with coaches stepping up when called upon.
"We like the three quarterbacks we have on our roster right now," Campbell said. "We feel like we're in a good spot there. We would have had to sign a tryout player at quarterback. There's nothing wrong with that to get through a practice."
He added, "Why waste one of those spots on somebody that we knew wasn't going to be here? We would rather use one of those spots and let's bring in a tight end, let's bring in a defensive back. Let's get eyes on somebody we think can make this roster. And so, we've got some coaches on this staff that actually can throw a little bit. So, we've used their arms somewhat. I would say this -- there's been a lot of ice, a lot of icing after practice, been a lot of heat pre- practice. We're getting it done, and they look pretty good."
Mark Brunell is the quarterbacks coach, but assistant coach Tanner Engstrand has been "steering the ship," according to Campbell.
"Tanner (Engstrand), one of our assistant coaches, has actually been really the one kind of steering the ship a little bit. He's done a good job calling plays in the huddle with them and then throwing routes on air. So, it's been really good."
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