Despite starting 11 games last season, Lions running back Ameer Abdullah only compiled 552 rushing yards on 165 carries. After three seasons in the league, the former second-rounder was hoping for a larger role, and he acknowledged that he was frustrated with his workload during an appearance on Michael Rapaport’s podcast.
“It’s frustrating, especially coming from Nebraska where I was the guy, I knew I was going to get the ball at least 20 times a game,” Abdullah said (via Michael David Smith of ProFootballTalk.com). “For me, it’s not necessarily getting a certain number of touches. It’s getting meaningful touches and getting into a rhythm. That’s where it gets kind of frustrating.”
The 24-year-old might not get his wish in 2018. Detroit did hire a new head coach in Matt Patricia, but Jim Bob Cooter stuck around as offensive coordinator. The Lions also signed veteran running back LeGarrette Blount, and they used a second-round pick on Kerryon Johnson.
Let’s take a look at some other notes from around the NFC…
- We learned last week that Giants offensive lineman Ereck Flowers was upset that the team signed free agent lineman Nate Solder. Giants head coach Pat Shurmur told Zach Braziller of the New York Post that he’s been in contact with the 2015 first-rounder, although he wouldn’t say when the lineman was expected to attend offseason workouts (Twitter link). The Giants signed Solder to a landmark deal this offseason and gave him Flowers’ position, and the team subsequently tried to shop their now-disgruntled lineman.
- The Seahawks did lose several big-name free agents this offseason, including tight end Jimmy Graham, defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson, and wideout Paul Richardson. However, as Bob Condotta of the Seattle Times writes, the organization isn’t expected to receive any compensatory picks in next year’s draft. Part of the reasoning has to do with the team’s free agent additions, as Seattle signed tight end Ed Dickson, wideout Jaron Brown, and linebacker Barkevious Mingo (thus offsetting the losses). The Seahawks may have gotten some compensation had offensive linemen Oday Aboushi and Luke Joeckel, running back Eddie Lacy, kicker Blair Walsh and linebacker Michael Wilhoite signed elsewhere, but the deadline for compensatory draft picks was on Wednesday.
- Buccaneers rookie linebacker Jack Cichy is already practicing with his new squad, writes Greg Auman of TampaBay.com. The sixth-round pick is nine months removed from surgery on a torn ACL in his right knee, an injury that caused him to miss the 2017 season (and, vicariously, caused his draft stock to fall). “It was fun to be back out here. Everything felt good,” said Cichy, who wore a brace on his right knee. “It felt crisp and felt good just to get back in the flow of things and get acclimated here.”
- When eying undrafted rookies who could contribute to the Packers this season, ESPN’s Rob Demovsky says we should “follow the money.” Last season, five members of Green Bay’s undrafted class finished the season on the active roster, and four of those players had received the highest-possible signing bonus. This year, the Packers gave $6K signing bonuses (the top possible amount) to five of their 16 undrafted signings: offensive lineman Jacob Alsadek, quarterback Tim Boyle, center Austin Davis, defensive tackle Tyler Lancaster, and defensive end Conor Sheehy.