Lions rookie cornerback Chase Lucas making case for roster spot early in camp

SideLion Report

Lions rookie cornerback Chase Lucas is a bit of a longshot to earn a roster spot, but a strong start to training camp may be changing that conversation.

When the Detroit Lions took Chase Lucas with their final pick of April’s draft, with five college seasons due to COVID impacting the 2020 campaign and buying anyone who wanted it an extra year, he instantly became the third-oldest cornerback on the team at 25 years old. With a solid resume of work in college at Arizona State, he has a chance to stick as the Lions fill out their cornerback depth chart with few things set in stone.

Still, a seventh-round rookie like Lucas has to make hay on special teams early in training camp to get noticed. Then maybe he can graduate to getting some prominent defensive snaps in practice.

Before Saturday’s practice, Lions head coach Dan Campbell was asked which rookies have stood out to him, within the caveat that Monday is the first day the team is in pads. Aidan Hutchinson was the obvious one to note, as he has been as advertised thus far by all accounts. Linebacker Malcolm Rodriguez has also made a strong impression so far, and Campbell mentioned him.

More surprisingly, Campbell also made mention of Lucas.

Chase Lucas earns praise from Dan Campbell

Via Kyle Meinke of MLive:

Lucas has caught my eye,” Campbell said. “I would tell you particularly in the special teams drills, that’s where I really see it. The compete drills. And there’s an awareness about him. He’s pretty instinctive, and he’s aggressive. You’ve got to have all of that to be a good special-teams player.

Lucas primarily worked as a slot corner on the third-team defense on the first few days of camp, with some second-team reps mixed in and solid reviews of his work overall.

The Lions have four cornerbacks who are locks to make the final 53-man roster if things go as planned/expected–Amani Oruwariye, Jeff Okudah, Mike Hughes and Will Harris. But keeping six or seven on the final 53 heading into Week 1 is certainly possible, and Lucas seems to be advancing himself in that mix.

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