Lions Sign Dizon

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

ALLEN PARK, Mich. (AP) -- Jordon Dizon knew he was going to get razzed when he reported to Detroit Lions camp.
That was one of the easier things he's had to face in a while.
"You expect that when you are a rookie," the second-round pick said of the raucous welcome he received from his new teammates after ending a short holdout.
The former Colorado linebacker made his debut at Friday afternoon's practice, a couple hours after signing his first professional contract.
"I think signing that contract probably even felt better than getting drafted," he said. "My hand was shaking so much that it was hard to write."
While Friday had highlights for Dizon, he also faced questions about his April 20 arrest in Colorado for driving under the influence and his decision to not tell the Lions.
"I'm as sorry as I can be, but I have to accept the consequences of my actions," he said. "It is a mistake that I'll never make again."
The incident happened six days before the draft, and he didn't make it public knowledge.
"It wasn't just my agent -- I had a lot of people telling me to do a lot of different things, and you don't know who to trust," he said. "I was facing a lot of decisions that I had never had to deal with before."
The Lions didn't find out until a court date on the matter hit the news in late June.
"I was at home in Hawaii and some friends called me and told me that it was on the news in Boulder," he said. "That's when I knew I had to make the call."
Dizon immediately picked up the phone and called Lions head coach Rod Marinelli to explain the situation.
"Before I got to know Coach, that would have been a very hard phone call to make, but now that I see that he's not only a coach but a father figure, it was easy," Dizon said. "I had wanted to make that call a lot of times, but I wasn't sure what to do."
Dizon still faces court appearances in the case, but Friday's signing will provide him with an easy distraction. He missed three practices -- two on Thursday and one Friday morning -- and was the last Lions draft pick to report to camp.
"This is where I wanted to be -- I spent $120 in gas driving around Dearborn yesterday, because I didn't have anything else to do with my life," he said. "I've been in town for two-and-a-half weeks, and I just wanted to play football."
Even with the late start, Dizon expects to battle for Detroit's starting middle linebacker job.
"They did a lot of installation of the defense in the last two days, so I'm behind, but I've done a lot of studying in the last few weeks," he said. "I've got two great athletes ahead of me in Buster Davis and Paris Lenon, but I'm here to compete. That's why we are all here."
Marinelli spoke to the media after Friday's first workout, before Dizon signed, but made his impatience clear.
"The first way to get better is to show up for work," he said.


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