ALLEN PARK — Danny Amendola’s challenge is finding where he best fits in the Detroit Lions’ new-look offense.
“I’m trying to develop a role on this team and I’m trying to expand that role as much as I can, do whatever I can to help the team win in whatever capacity that is. That’s why I’m here,’’ the 33-year-old said on Thursday.
Amendola played in 15 games for the Miami Dolphins last season with 59 receptions and a touchdown. The previous five seasons he spent with the New England Patriots where he got to know Matt Patricia who was the defensive coordinator.
“He’s tough man, he demands a lot, he expects a lot, he has high expectations. I knew that coming here that’s why I wanted to come here, he’s a great coach,’’ Amendola said.
Patricia obviously thinks highly of him too.
“I think just in general you’ve got to love Danny Amendola, you’ve got to love everything he brings every single day,’’ Patricia said on Friday. “He’s probably one of the most intense people you’re going to talk to. When you’re passionate about the game of football like we all are and like he is passion breeds passion …
“He’s like everybody else he’s got a lot of work to do to improve. But as far as a person he’s a football guy, he loves the game, he loves being around the guys, loves every aspect of it. All of that energy is contagious and that’s great to be around all the time,’’ the coach said.
The veteran wide receiver — he is 33 — been working overtime with Matthew Stafford to develop a rapport.
“Anytime we’re able to get together we try to get as many reps as we can is possible. We’re out here right now trying to steal as many reps, before practice, after practice, in the weight room,’’ he said. “We’re always talking about ideas, trying to get better.’’
Amendola, who wears No. 80, was among those returning punts in training camp on Thursday.
During the spring Marvin Jones and Kenny Golladay were sidelined with injuries which gave Amendola more reps with Stafford.
“It’s great to have them back they’re two explosive players and I’m happy to be playing with them,’’ Amendola said. “I’m excited to be it he huddle with them.’’
He’s not the only veteran wide receiver signed as a free agent. Jermaine Kearse has also been added to the roster.
Amendola also has the utmost respect for Stafford.
“Exceptional. He’s up there with the best I’ve been with,’’ Amendola said. “Extremely cerebral player, he can anticipate and he’s been doing it for a long time at an extremely high level so I’m excited to be here with him.’’