Aug 22, 2013; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Lions running back Theo Riddick (41) is tackled by New England Patriots defense during 2nd half at Ford Field. Lions won 40-9. Mandatory Credit: Mike Carter-USA TODAY Sports

Is Lions Theo Riddick the next Darren Sproles?

The Lions stole Joe Lombardi away from the Saints. Lombardi’s offense was largely responsible for the explosion of Darren Sproles. The Lions have a great pass catching, squarely running back in Theo Riddick. So does one and one make two here? Theo Riddick could be the next Darren Sproles.

“I’m telling you, if he doesn’t have 50 catches this year, I’ll be surprised because he’s going to have opportunities and he’s very talented at it,” Orlovsky said on the Ross Tucker Football Podcast, via the Detroit Free Press. “I think he’s going to play that Sproles role, for sure.”

Slow down Orlovsky. Only Calvin Johnson, Reggie Bush and Joique Bell got 50 catches on the Lions last season. However, Bush and Bell had trouble dealing with the carries last season, both ailed by injured. Perhaps including a third back into the fray is in order.

Orlovsky has likely spent a lot of time with Riddick on the second team this offseason. While some might be concerned that production without pads may not translate to production in contact situations, Orlovsky thinks the opposite.

“I mean this kid, he wasn’t covered a single time in OTAs and minicamp. He was not covered,” Orlovsky said. “And I think it’s even going to be easier when he gets pads on because once linebackers just try to start colliding him, and that’s what teams started to do with Sproles sometimes, you hit the home run one out of every 10 plays. And then nine out of 10 times, Sproles wins. And that’s what I think Theo’s going to do that for us.”

Tags: Darren Sproles Detroit Lions Theo Riddick

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