Lions rookie underscores competitive fire while talking about mom: 'I would jam her into the dirt'


Detroit Lions draft pick Terrion Arnold spoke about his mother on Saturday during the second day of rookie minicamp and underscored how she lit the competitive fire in him.

He said Tamala Arnold and him would continually go back-and-forth against each other when he was younger and that the nature of the competitiveness would get intense at times.

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Detroit Lions cornerback Terrion Arnold is interviewed after an NFL rookie football practice on Friday, May 10, 2024, in Allen Park, Michigan. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)

“When I was a kid, when I used to beat my mom at racing, I had to continually beat her,” he said, via AL.com. “We used to fight when I was younger, just wrestling with her or playing around. Like, man, I’ll never forget one time my mom kicked my tooth out because we were just going at it so hard.”

“If my mom was out here right now, and she lined up across from me as a receiver, I would jam her into the dirt. That’s my mindset. And my mom knows that. I just mean in the simple aspect of football-wise, that’s just the way that I think and the way that I was brought up.”

Terrion Arnold in a drill

Detroit Lions cornerback Terrion Arnold performs during a drill during an NFL rookie football practice on Friday, May 10, 2024, in Allen Park, Michigan. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)

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Arnold later explained that he meant to convey that he was not “one not to be played with” even as he started his rookie season.

Before the Lions selected him with the No. 24 pick of the NFL Draft in April, he paid tribute to Tamala at the NFL Scouting Combine.

He praised her for all the adversity she overcame to raise him.

Terrion Arnold in Michigan

Detroit Lions cornerback Terrion Arnold talks to the media after an NFL rookie football practice, Friday, May 10, 2024, in Allen Park, Michigan. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)

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Arnold was a First-Team All-American and First-Team All-SEC in his final year at Alabama in 2023. He had five interceptions and 63 total tackles.

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