Dan Orlovsky officially done in Detroit; Jake Rudock expected to be No. 2 QB
Dan Orlovsky's career in Detroit appears to be finished. (Mike Mulholland | MLive.com)
By Kyle Meinke | [email protected]
Follow on Twitter
on February 16, 2017 at 10:23 AM, updated February 16, 2017 at 10:52 AM
ALLEN PARK -- Dan Orlovsky always seemed like a long shot to return to the Detroit Lions next season.
Now, it's official.
"The Lions let me know they're going in a different direction with Jake Rudock as backup to Matthew (Stafford)," Orlovsky said Thursday morning on SiriusXM.
Orlovsky was originally selected by Detroit in the fifth round of the 2005 draft, and played seven years spanning two stints for the club. He completed 172 of 312 passes for 1,880 yards, nine touchdowns, nine picks and a passer rating of 70.7.
He is perhaps best remembered for running out of the back of the end zone during the club's 0-16 season in 2008, and attempted just 40 passes since returning to Detroit to back up Stafford in 2014. But he was considered an asset around Allen Park for his ability to help prep Stafford for his starts.
Lions QB Jake Rudock makes strides during rookie yearA 12-year veteran who played in Detroit, Indianapolis, Houston and Tampa Bay, plus had a close working relationship with Stafford, he brought a lot to the film room and other prep work. That experience ultimately helped him win the backup job again this past year, even though Rudock, a rookie sixth-round pick, had a better preseason.
Jake Rudock didn't play a down for the Detroit Lions this season. But that didn't stop the rookie quarterback from showing up to the practice facility before sunrise anyway, poring over film for games he knew he would never play in.
But Rudock continued to improve as the season progressed, and the Lions eventually promoted him from the practice squad to the 53-man roster to protect him from bolting for Chicago. And now that he has a year of experience, Detroit appears ready to turn over its backup job to the former Michigan signal-caller.
"I felt like I got a better grasp of the playbook," Rudock told MLive after the season ended. "Because you're installing plays every week, and just got a good idea of what's happening. I mean, preseason, it was a blur. Now it's more I know the reads, what they're trying to do with them."
The Lions will eventually add another QB to get through offseason workouts and training camp, and Rudock won't have the job handed to him. But after spending a season learning from Stafford, and learning how to back him up from Orlovsky, Rudock has become the clear favorite.
"I'm just following these guys. Whatever they were doing, I tried to follow it as closely as I can," Rudock said. "I think a lot of just how they approach the game -- both those guys -- on a daily and weekly basis really helped me understand what it takes to play quarterback at this level. We went through a lot this year. We went 1-3, and then we went on a nice win streak, and then down a little more, but making the playoffs. So it was just a lot of good learning experiences for a young player."