August 14, 2022

Detroit Lions Training Camp
Photo by Nic Antaya/Getty Images

He attributes the ease to his size and physicality.

Officially switching to a new defensive role last week, Ifeatu Melifonwu is happy to report the transition is going better than he thought it would.

Melifonwu is now officially listed on the Detroit Lions depth chart as a safety after playing cornerback his rookie campaign. He switched roles with Will Harris, who spent the last three years at safety.

“I don’t think there (are) that many corners that can go to safety. It’s an easier transition to go from corner to safety than safety to corner but I feel like just my size and athletic ability helps and physicality,” he said.

The good news is that size and physicality, all 6-foot-3 and 210 pounds of it, has helped make for an easier transition. It’s made him versatile

“The transition has actually been smoother — maybe than I thought it would be,” he said.

While he’s ironing out his physical skills on the field at training camp, he’s been working on the mental part since OTAs and says it has been by far the hardest part.

“At corner, you’re only seeing half the field and you’re kind of waiting on the safety to make the call to you, but at safety, you see the full field and you got to make the call. You gotta know when to come down, you gotta know when you’re back,” he explained.

He went on to say that when you’re covering the middle of the field, you don’t have a particular assignment. But at cornerback, it’s clear you’re covering the guy in front of you.

“You’ve got to just be disciplined with your eyes and stuff and stay in your pedal. It’s just a little different,” Melifonwu said.

There isn’t one position that appeals to him more than the other. They involve different perspectives. He likes both. Basically, as he puts it: “I just like playing football.”

Can’t ask for much more than that—well except for this interception from him during Thursday’s practice:

And on to the rest of your notes.

An additional note to that story:

  • An additional note to *that* storyline, aka Dan Campbell showing thoughtfulness:

  • Fred Taylor was a Jags running back from 1998-2008 and Mark Brunell QB’d from 1995-2003.

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