New Role For Veteran Porcher

Lions' defensive end Robert Porcher enters his 13th season with a bit of a different role than before.

Lions' head coach Steve Mariucci can't help but speak high volumes in regards to veteran defensive end Robert Porcher.

The 13-year veteran will take a more limited onfield role with Detroit this season, making room for youthful and talented defensive linemen James Hall and Kalimba Edwards.

Porcher will likely become primarily a situational pass rush specialist, entering the game on specific occasions or to spell a starter, but that doesn't necessarily make his impact any less significant.

"There are certain roles that are required on any team," said Mariucci on Tuesday. "... you got your leaders on the teams -- who are the veteran guys who have been there, done that; they know how to practice, they know how to lead, teach the young kids, mentor, have a voice, and that sort of thing.

"That's what he is -- a leader."

Porcher had his least productive year last season since 1994, registering just 4.5 sacks and 24 tackles. Earlier this year, he restructured his contract to open up salary cap space for the ball club.

Porcher has yet to voice his displeasure over his contract, or his diminished playing time.

"He still can be very productive, too, as far as his pass rush and his play on defense," said Mariucci, "But every team has to have a group of leadership in the locker room. There's a culture in the locker room... you have to have a handful of guys who will keep it straight; who are a reflection of the coach; who make sure the team is doing what we ask them to do.

"I lean on him in discussion, privately, about the team, and that sort of thing, and he's very good at it."

Lions Report Top Stories