Leader of the (Backup) Running Back Pack

Former Michigan State standout Sedrick Irvin has earned his way into the Lions' backup running back role, according to Lions' insider Justin Vanfulpen. But Irvin doesn't have plans of stopping just there.

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Justin Vanfulpen - LionsFans.com

SAGINAW- One of the big question marks going into training camp this summer was who was going to be the Lions back-up running back this season. Everyone knew that James Stewart was the starter, but the back-up running back was an apparent void.

However, after the first few day of two-a-days, there has been a guy that has taken a lead in the race for the back-up spot, and that is Sedrick Irvin, a third-year pro out of Michigan State. But Irvin is not looking to be the back up, he wants more than just a back-up role with the Lions.

"See, that is not my thing. I don't compete to be second. I don't live my life to be second or average, I try to be the best that I can be," said Irvin.

Irvin recognizes that James Stewart is the starter, and that is the way that it is going to be no matter how much he shines in practice and pre-season, but he is not going to settle. He is going to compete.

"I'm competing with the starter even though I know it is all ready set up, but I'm just not shooting to say 'Hey I'm going to settle to be the back-up'," said Irvin.

Serdick Irvin has hopes and dreams to one day be a starter, and a star, in this league -- and he dreams big.

"My dream and goal is to one day be a starter. To be that Edgerrin James, that Fred Taylor, that Emmitt Smith if that is one year from now or 4 or 5 years I'm going keep working towards that goal," Irvin said. "I'm not gonna go around and say 'I'm going to be a back-up for the rest of my life', so I'm competing to be number one. But I know it's set up already but I'm still working towards that."

With the new coaching staff, Irvin feels like he has a new look on this season.

"It's a great opportunity for me I feel like it's a new birth. New coaches, so I get a new identity," Irvin said. "I feel like if they (coaching staff) use me and the plays that we have, I know I can make plays. I've got faith and I believe in myself, so I'm just coming out here everyday showing that I can be a guy that they can count on and try to compete each and every day."

"Sedrick is right in the ballpark as far as our running back situation. He knows expectations are high for him. I would expect him to do some tremendous things in the pre-season games," said head coach Marty Mornhinweg.

One thing that the West Coast offense provides is that the running back is not just an outlet receiver, but is an option for the quarterbacks, and sometimes the second or third option.

"A lot of times the back is in the read, the second or third read. A lot of times they try to get a mismatch on a linebacker, and I'm blessed that I can run routes," said Sedrick.

Sedrick Irvin has been very impressive this training camp so far. The former Spartan has shown what everyone knew he could do, and that was catching the ball out of the backfield. But he also has displayed that he can pick a hole, hit it, and make some great moves running with the ball. He has also showed that he has put in a great off-season working on his speed.

Presently, Irvin looks like he will be the back up this season, and could see quite a bit of playing time this season under the West Coast offense.


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