Blue and Gold Illustrated

Sept. 9, 2013 Issue

Blue & Gold Illustrated: America's Foremost Authority on Notre Dame Football

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irish in the pros Theo Riddick Is Fighting For A Roster Spot In Detroit Lions running back Reggie Bush told "He has very good or a player who bounced between vision and he's a natural runner in bedifferent roles in his four years tween the tackles. at Notre Dame, former Irish running "When I was a rookie, I wasn't as back Theo Riddick scored his first pro- good as he is at running the ball. I was a fessional touchdown (albeit in a pre- natural playmaker, but I wasn't a natuseason game) in a way that ral in-between-the-tackles mirrored his 2012 success runner." with Notre Dame. With his Riddick is one of about new team, the Detroit Lia dozen players on the ons, two yards away from bubble to make Detroit's a touchdown, they went to 53-man roster out of camp. their sixth-round selection He overcame a rough start to pick up the last couple to his professional career at yards of the drive. Riddick organized team activities powered through the Pa(OTAs) over the summer triots' defensive line for the before shining during the score. Riddick had 21 carries for 74 preseason. As Irish fans know, Rid- yards and a touchdown, plus "I was just trying to learn dick's 5-10, 201-pound six receptions for 35 yards everything on the fly, tryframe is misleading when and two scores, in the Lions' ing not to mess up, trying to considering his strength four preseason games. make a great impression," photo courtesy detroit lions he said. "You end up doing and ability as a short-yardage back. It was only nine months ago a lot more thinking than just playing." that Riddick helped Notre Dame clinch Riddick said the six weeks off bea perfect regular season with one of the tween OTAs and mini-camp helped him program's most inspiring performances find a comfort zone with his new team. in recent years: 179 total yards, a touch"Having that time off to study the down and an endless supply of grit plays really helped," he said. "I like to against archrival USC. get acclimated with the playbook more Although Riddick now faces stronger and know my craft as opposed to just and faster defenses in the NFL, he has thinking out there and playing a lot already impressed his new teammates slower." and coaching staff with his hard runOne aspect of Riddick's game that ning style. could help him ultimately make the ros"He doesn't run the ball like a rookie," ter is his ability to return kickoffs. AlBy Andrew Owens F

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