LIONS INSIDER

Coaches criticism music to Broyles' ear

Posted Jul 29, 2012

Ryan Broyles has spent nine months working and rehabbing to get back on the football field 100-percent after ACL surgery in November. In his first drill of training camp after being activated off the non-football injury list on Sunday, Lions head coach Jim Schwartz got on him for not being ready for his turn in a one-on-one drill against a defensive back and for not having his chinstrap snapped.

Welcome to training camp, Broyles.

“That’s a part of football,” Broyles said with smile of the scolding from coach. “You love that when a coach gets on you. That means he cares. That’s a good thing.”

Veteran Nate Burleson was waiting for coaches to get on Broyles at some point during Sunday’s practice, though he probably wasn’t expecting it would be the first drill.

“If he would have come out here and had a perfect day, he still would have got yelled at,” Burleson said after practice. “You’ve got to go through that as a rookie. He's not going to slide right in without having the fire put to him a little bit.

“I talked to coach Shawn Jefferson, our receiver coach, you know he's like an evil genius so sometimes he does things on purpose just to see how you respond. And for (Broyles), he's going to have to catch up fast, get used to that harsh criticism by the coaches and that high speed of the game and he's doing pretty good for it being his first day.”

Broyles was back on the practice field cutting, catching passes and returning punts a week short of exactly nine months since he tore his left ACL in a game against Texas A&M while a senior at Oklahoma.

Broyles took part in some individual and special teams drills but none of the team portion of practice because of NFL rules calling for players to have two unpadded practices before they can compete in pads. The team was in shoulder pads Sunday after spending the first two days of camp unpadded.

It just so happens Broyles’ first eligible day to put on the pads will take place Tuesday, when the team will be in full pads for the first time in training camp.

“Looking forward to it,” he said.

Broyles said he’s experienced little to no swelling in his knee over the last couple days working on the side with trainers, which is why he was allowed to be taken off the NFI list and given the go ahead to practice. He says he’s not worried about the knee at all and doesn’t even think about when he’s on the field.

“I’ve been on my legs cutting for the last four months now, so I’m out there and really just worried about the defense right now,” he said.

Burleson said he and the other receivers are looking forward to seeing what Broyles can do in a couple days when he’s a full participant with the rest of the group.

“He caught 131 balls (in 2010 at Oklahoma) so one thing we do know is he can catch the ball,” Burleson said. “And a lot of people don't know, especially you guys in the media, he's hungry. I was trying to tell him not to come out here, that he has time, we need him during the season versus during training camp but one thing that I love to hear, he said, ‘I want to earn my pay.’

“He doesn't like sitting in the locker room while we're coming out here and grinding. So for a guy who wants to get on the field that bad and just because he's seen other guys making plays, that's a good sign so far.”