The three members of last year’s Lions draft class that have been arrested on marijuana charges since the end of the regular season should clear some space on their calendar.
Wide receiver Nate Burleson wants to have a discussion with the trio — defensive tackle Nick Fairley, running back Mikel Leshoure and offensive tackle Johnny Culbreath — about running afoul of the law this year. Burleson thinks the Lions have come too far to let off-field things retard their progress and plans to share those thoughts with the players in private conversations.
“I’m a little bit different, I don’t want to put people on blast in front of the team,” Burleson said, via Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free-Press. “Sometimes you’re going to need to do that. Or a certain guy, certain situations, they need to feel that embarrassment of everybody looking down on them. But some of these guys that we saw on the board, these are good young men and I know that they’re passionate about being professional athletes, it’s just that they make mistakes.”
There were red flags about the possibility of those mistakes before the Lions added the players to the organization, but they chose to ignore them. They’ve gotten burnt by that this offseason, but if Burleson and other veterans can get everyone in line the fallout should have minimal impact on the year to come.