Catching Up With Orie Lemon
By John Helsley
follow on twitter @jjhelsley
After closing out his Oklahoma State career in style — 133 tackles as a senior — linebacker Orie Lemon went undrafted by the NFL in 2011.
Eventually, he remained a Cowboy, a Dallas Cowboy, signing as a free agent last spring. Lemon’s first season was spent on the practice squad. Now he’s bidding to make the playing roster, doing whatever he can, including special teams work, to get on the field.
In this item in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Lemon gives his take on what it takes to be a good special teams player. I like No. 4, with Lemon saying you’ve got to have some “dog” in you. That’s code for some nastiness.
Lemon was soft-spoken, yet still a solid interview while at OSU. But make no mistake, between the lines, he had some dog in him. It’s mandatory at linebacker. And you can’t rack up 133 tackles if you don’t have some bite to your bark.
The biggest hurdle for Lemon is securing playing time, especially at linebacker, is a lack of speed. His official 40 time is just south of 5-flat, 4.94. And while the times you regularly hear tossed around with college kids are much better, they’re also overstated by a longshot, 4.94 is rather pedestrian for the NFL backer.
Still, Lemon’s excellent instincts lead him to the ball. And at any level, but especially in the pros, a correct first step is critical to making — or not making — the play.
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