Allen Park, Mich. -- Very quietly, veteran safety Glover Quin is making his presence felt.
"It was pretty seamless, him coming from Houston," coach Jim Schwartz said. "He's been in the league for a little bit, so that was fairly easy for him. Got the terminology, picked up our system quickly and gained the respect of the other guys in the locker room."
For cornerback Chris Houston, what stood out about Quin was his leadership.
"He's very smart," Houston said. "He learned the defense overnight. He's making plays back there. He caught an interception (Friday) but he's been much more of a leader in everything, so I feel much comfortable with him. When we talk, he knows things."
Quin knows a lot but prefers to show it on the field rather than talking about it.
"I just try to be a football player," Quin said. "A lot of times, when you come in and you talk more than you play, sometimes you can get off to a bad start with the team.
"When you come in and you play more than you talk and let your film and and your work and your actions be louder than anything you have to say, sometimes it's easier for guys to respect you and they know, OK, he's going to work, he's going to play, he's going to do all the things that's going to help us win.
"Then when you start to talk, they respect you because they've seen you work. I just try to come in and play football and anytime you're playing good football, when you're on a good team and you're playing together, it's going to look like you fit in because you're playing football."
When asked why, given the fact that he probably had other teams that wanted him, he chose to come to the Lions, Quin was matter-of-fact.
"You want to go somewhere where you're wanted," Quin said. "Why not want to go somewhere where two years ago, they made the playoffs, last year they lose seven or eight games by three points or less, a lot of that could be miscommunication in the secondary.
"A lot of it could be simple secondary play to where hey, we make one or two plays in the secondary, you win those eight games. So instead of going 4-12, you go 12-4, you're in the playoffs again. So why not take that challenge to be the guy to come in and help?"
Receiver Nate Burleson is certain that Quin is going to help, just from what he's seen so far.
"Glover Quin, doesn't say much but shows up for work every day and is always in the right position," Burleson said. "I don't think since I've been here, and since he's showed up on the team, that I've seen him get beat deep, which is a big statement because we got a lot of speed. (Friday) I think he made a diving interception. I'm really excited about seeing him and a healthy (Louis) Delmas back there."
Quin, who started every game for the last the last three seasons for the Houston Texans, is likely to get beaten at some point by Calvin Johnson. But he relishes that.
"I feel like I'm a blessed player," Quin said. "My first four years in the league I got the opportunity to go against Andre Johnson every day in practice, now I get to go against Calvin Johnson every day. Obviously when you're going against the best guys, you're going against the top guys, they're going to make you better. They're going to bring out the best in you every day, you've got to do your best to bring out the best in them every day.
"It's all for the common goal, to win. So if he makes a play on me, as long as he's making me better, I can make the play against anybody else we play. If I make the play on him, as long as I'm making him better, he can make the play on the next man when we line up on Sunday. Because on Sundays, we're on the same team for the same goal. That's what it's about, working each other, making each other better."
Suh's conditioning just fine
Schwartz was already on record praising defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh's offseason work and that was before he saw him do the conditioning test that all players were required to complete this camp.
"Ndamukong's always been a guy who's been in great shape but he took it to a different level this year," Schwartz said. "Quite honestly, he made a mockery of the conditioning test. He really did."
Heading into his fourth NFL season, Suh has found a system that works for him.
"You work on different things and you're always trying to improve and come in in better shape," Suh said. "I've found a pretty solid way of approaching the summer and doing what I need to come into camp. But obviously one of my biggest improvements and I'm very lucky and happy to have Coach Wash (assistant defensive line coach Jim Washburn), the chemistry that him and (defensive line coach) Kris (Kocurek) bring together."
Suh said Washburn and Kocurek are working with him 0on understanding what teams are trying to do to him and how he can beat that.
However, Suh did not want to announce any specific goals that he has for the upcoming season.
"I don't want to put any limitations on my ability," Suh said. "I want to be able to leave it open-ended and have an opportunity to let the sky be the limit and if the sky's the limit, then I'll let the universe be the limit."
Bartell doesn't finish practice
Cornerback Ron Bartell was not able to finish practice Saturday after landing hard on his right shoulder.
"We'll get it tested today," Schwartz said. "It's probably too early to tell. He wasn't in a whole lot of discomfort but shoulders can be a little bit funny. He hasn't had shoulders in the past so we'll just have to sort of wait and see on that one."
Bartell had ice on his shoulder as he watched the rest of practice from the sideline.
As Schwartz had said Friday, safety Louis Delmas did not practice Saturday as they try to reduce the wear and tear on his knees.
Linebacker Carmen Messina also did not practice.