Hard-hitting Lions won’t get pushed around in 2009

ALLEN PARK, Mich. –- One of the first impressions that you draw from the Lions’ training-camp practices is that this looks like a much tougher and more physical club than the one they had last year.

Former coach Rod Marinelli often boasted that he had a tough squad, but the Lions were routinely pushed around by opponents on the way to their 0-16 season.

That doesn’t seem likely to happen this year. Not after seeing the intensity of the Lions’ contact drills. There are plenty of hard hitters on defense, including a solid trio of linebackers in Ernie Sims, Julian Peterson, and Larry Foote, as well as rookie S Louis Delmas.

Even RB Kevin Smith falls into the tough-guy category with his willingness to take on tacklers as well as avoid them.

– Vic Carucci

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