Matthew Stafford puts in extra work with rookie wide receiver Kenny Golladay

Third-round pick expected to make the 53-man roster

Matthew Stafford and rookie wide receiver Kenny Golladay are putting in overtime to find their comfort level with each other.

When Golladay was not happy with his first day of training camp he was smart enough to seek help. He asked Stafford if he could go through a few routes with him.

Mind you, it was hot and humid. The intensity level was high and it was just the first day.

One reason why Stafford is The Franchise is because he went the extra mile for the rookie.

“(He said) whenever you feel like you need something just come to me and I’ve gotcha,’’ said Golladay, the Lions third-round draft pick.

Stafford, who is entering his ninth season, had good words of advice and a way of making Golladay feel like he’s an integral part of the offense.

“It’s a great feeling, you know an older guy like that, a vet, taking me under his wing and helping me a little bit,’’ Golladay said. “What he really said to me was it’s going to come in time, just keep working on it and ‘I’ve gotcha.’’’

Golladay has made several outstanding catches in camp just like the Northern Illinois product did in the spring during OTAs and minicamp.

While there’s a battle for the wide receiver spots after Golden Tate and Marvin Jones Jr., he has put himself in the discussion. Don’t be surprised if he starts the season as the No. 3 guy.

Coach Jim Caldwell said he’s seen steady improvement but wants to see more before he inks Golladay’s name on the 53-man roster.

“He’s got a ways to go yet, but he’s got height (he’s 6-foot-4), he’s got ability, he’s got the drive and work ethic to try and improve each and every day so, we’re excited about where he is now but, this is a time where we’re really going to get an opportunity (to see more),’’ Caldwell said. “We can get a little bit more contact here coming up with pads on and things of that nature.”

Then, of course, the preseason games will be key. Expect Golladay to get plenty of reps while Tate and Jones get plenty of bench time.

Golladay loves the competition in camp.

“I’m just trying to get better every day. That’s all that’s really on my mind, every day getting better and perfecting my craft. Coming to work each and every day trying to learn something new I didn’t know the other day,’’ the 23-year-old Golladay said.

“I’m still a kid at heart, still a kid really, period. Coming out every day is fun, playing football.’’

He said he’s gotten camp advice from many veterans. They mostly sing the same tune.

“Really that it’s just a grind and get as much sleep as possible,’’ Golladay said.

 

Packers fans still blue over seeing T.J. Lang in a Lions uniform

Lang will start at right guard on a revamped offensive line

No surprise that Green Bay Packer fans were not happy to see T.J. Lang wearing Honolulu blue and silver. After all, they’re not used to losing free agents to Detroit.

Even though it’s been months since Lang signed with the Lions as a free agent, the wounds of Packer fans remain raw. After all he was an offensive line fixture for the past eight seasons in Green Bay.

Lang, who will start at right guard for Detroit, had not practiced with the Lions until Sunday because he was coming off hip surgery. He took all the reps at right guard although he said it’s a possibility he may take it easy occasionally in training camp.

More bad news for Packers’ fans — Lang feels great.

He took the podium after the first day of training camp with his son, J.J. to answer questions from the media. Like most offensive linemen he’d rather play the game than talk about it. But he was cordial and had support from J.J. who was more fascinated with his wristband than the Detroit media contingent.

It was my best photo of the day, so I Tweeted it out. Packer backers weren’t quite as enthralled as Lions’ fans.

One little photo caused an avalanche of response on Twitter:

— @Empeypp: His son is adorable, which is why I feel so bad he was to watch his dad play on a 6-10 team.

— @Confuzled: Poor little kid

— @SuperCral: If he’s got another son named Derek, I’m calling shenanigans.

— @Wiscoinferno: That jersey looks no bueno on TJ tbh

— @PackerFans_: Lang breaking the news to Lions fans that he won’t be able to get them into the playoffs on his own.

— @AlecYanke: This is just wrong

— @BrewCrewCritic: Unfortunately, this will probably be a theme for the entire season. Posted with an old meme from ‘The Lion King’ with the words: “Dad, What’s a Super Bowl? I don’t know son, we’re Lions.”

— @Cletoreyes915: This image makes me sick. Then again I think I had to much hot sauce this morning.

And a few fine Packers’ fans — definitely a minority — hold no ill will.

— Taina Dejesus: I wish him the best I love tj

— Mattthommesen: Will miss you T.J. Lang please don’t hate packer nation. We loved you.

Lang grew up in the Detroit area and always dreamed of playing for the Lions.

“I think every kid dreams of playing for their hometown team, now it’s a reality for me,’’ Lang said. “At the end of the day that washes away pretty quick, get your mind back on football.’’

Only 98 days until the NFC North rivalry continues. On Nov. 6, a Monday night game at Green Bay, the division rivals will meet for the first time this season.

Five things to know about contract extension for Glover Quin

Two-year, $13 million extension will keep him in Detroit through 2019

ALLEN PARK — Glover Quin wanted to get his contract extension signed before the start of training camp.

He got his wish with minutes to spare when he signed a two-year extension worth about $6.5 million per year just before camp started at 3:30 p.m. on Sunday. The safety, who signed with Detroit in 2013, is now signed through the 2019 season.

He’s the Ironman of the Lions’ defense with 116 consecutive starts which ranks as the most among active NFL safeties and second among all defensive backs.

Quin has been a solid force in the secondary. He was selected to the Pro Bowl following the 2014 season when he had a career-high seven interceptions.

Five things to know about Quin and his contract extension:

1.  It was important to him to get it done in a timely fashion. “Last year I think (Darius) Slay signed his extension right before training camp. I kind of wanted to be in the same situation,’’ Quin said. “I told my guys I don’t want this thing to linger through training camp —  either I want to get it done or (say) we couldn’t come to terms, GQ is in his last year in Detroit, let’s enjoy and have a lot of fun and understand it was a part of business. That was one thing I wanted, I didn’t want it to linger.’’

2. Coach Jim Caldwell, among others, is thrilled to know Quin got a deal done. “We’re happy about that. He’s one of those guys that does everything the right way. He’s outstanding in terms of preparation off the field. On the field he’s tremendous it’s like having obviously another assistant coach out there on the field,’’ Caldwell said. “He does (everything) in terms of preparation and all the little things, Glover does a great job he’s very conscientious and sets a great example for the rest of the guys as well.’’

3. Quin said it gave him a lift when he ran on the field knowing the extension was done. “Going into the last year of a contract you just never know what’s going to happen, you don’t get a deal, you go into free agency, you never know,’’ Quin said. “You live in Houston you’ve kind of been used to being in Detroit and so to have to leave and now you’re going to some other city, obviously you don’t want to do that. …’’

4. Quin, 31, told the media on Saturday that he wanted to get a deal done, but gave no hint that it was 24 hours away. “They’ve been talking about it for a long time … All I knew I when they told me we were close, how close you never know until they close the deal. We got it closed today,’’ Quin said.

5. Before he signed, he called his wife to let her know the terms. Then after he signed, he texted her. She responding congratulating him on signing his third NFL contract. “A lot of people don’t sign three NFL contracts. A little kid like me from a small town in MIssissippi —  Summit, Mississippi — to be in the NFL long enough to receive three contracts and play at a level high enough to be rewarded with three contacts. I’m just happy right now,’’ Quin said.

BONUS: Most of Quin’s teammates weren’t aware of the extension because they were on the field warming up when it got done. And Quin wasn’t going to run on the field sharing his good news. Of course, they certainly all should be happy. Defensive tackle Haloti Ngata said it was a no-brainer.