Holt Emerging As A Leader; Will He Be A Starter?

With the two-week minicamp session in the fold, one thing became clear, Lions third-year safety Terrence Holt is a man on a mission. Lions' insider Mike Fowler gives his take on Holt, his new competition from R.W. McQuarters, and several notes.

ALLEN PARK - With the two-week minicamp session in the fold, one thing became clear, Lions third-year safety Terrence Holt is a man on a mission.

Holt is tired of being on the sidelines watching the action. He wants badly to claim the Lions starting free safety position and showed it with his energy, enthusiasm and vocal leadership.

His attitude was infectious.

The Lions defense flew all over the field during the camp, showing a speed and intensity that is often lacking in season opening minicamps. Lions coach Steve Mariucci said that the attitude was a welcome sight.

"[It] was a lively practice. I loved the energy ... we were bringing it. We had a couple of blitz periods and that got pretty intense," said head coach Steve Mariucci.

Detroit possesses something in the safety unit this season that it did not a year ago, an infusion of speed. Holt, and free agent acquisition Kenoy Kennedy give the unit a new, agressive look and at first glance, an ability to disrupt opposing offenses. Mariucci gives much of the credit for the attitude of the unit to Holt, who seems intent on installing a new attitude.

"He had a some interceptions as a rookie if you recall and he did not get to play a lot last year like he wanted to so now he is lining up there at safety and he is doing a good job. He is a vocal guy, he is a heads up guy and he is getting better with [every] practice," Mariucci said.

Holt, though, may now face some unexpected competition in the form of veteran defensive back/returner R.W. McQuarters who agreed to terms with the Lions on a reported $1.6 million, one-year deal earlier this week. McQuarters has played safety in his career and is known as a playmaker.

Still, it appears to be Holt's job to lose and if he maintains his enthusiasm along with the playmaking ability he's shown in the past, its difficult to imagine him not being a large factor in the Detroit secondary this season.

NEWS AND NOTES: Former Lions scout Rick Spielman was dismissed by the Miami Dolphins but it appears he will not be considered for a vacancy in the Lions personnel department created when Russ Bollinger left the team for a position with the Washington Redskins. The team may fill the vacancy internally.

Returner Eddie Drummond still has not signed a one-year $1.4 million tender offer made to him by the team and the deadline is Wednesday for him to do so. If not, Detroit can reduce its qualifying offer to 10% above his 2004 salary - to just $450,000. Drummond's agent Drew Rosenhaus is hoping to get a long-term deal similar to if not greater than the $2 million signing bonus veteran returner Allan Rossum received from the Atlanta Falcons.

Former Clemson receiver Roscoe Crosby is making himself eligible for the July 14th supplemental draft. Crosby, who signed a baseball contract with the Kansas City Royals, has not played football in four years, but showed flashes in a workout with Arizona Cardinals quarterback Shaun King. Crosby, according to observers caught every pass from King and timed out with a 4.37-40.

Former Lions starting right tackle Stockar McDougle criticized the team in comments to the Ft. Lauderdale, FL Sun-Sentinel claiming offensive line coach Pat Morris bad mouthed him to prospective suitors around the league.

"There was some bad reports that came from my former O-line coach that didn't help me in free agency, and [I] just [want to] show that all those things he said about me weren't true," McDougle is quoted as saying by reporter Harvey Fialkov.

According to the report, Detroit chose not to respond to McDougle's claims.

McDougle, who was expected by some to be one of the more highly sought after free agent tackles, drew minimal interest on the open market and was forced to settle for a one-year bargain basement deal with the Dolphins.

The Sporting News gives the Lions an "A-" for their offseason acquisitions and says the team may be able to turn the moves into wins.

The NFL Players association recognized Lions kicker Jason Hanson for his assistance with Detroit's Gabriel Richard school's "Autographs for Education" program which aims to raise $1 million for school supplies for children attending the school.

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