The Detroit Lions had pretty awful luck with injuries this season. They lost several starters to season-ending injuries, and several other players missed a good deal of time over the course of 2014. But which Lions players spent the most time injured this season? To find out, I compiled the data from the Lions' 17 final injury reports (16 regular-season games and one playoff game), injured reserve list and PUP list and plugged it all into a table. Take a look:
(Note: P = probable, Q = questionable, D = doubtful and O = out.)
|RB||Joique Bell||5||1||6||Concussion (2), knee (2), Achilles (1), ankle (1)|
|Reggie Bush||4||5||1||10||Ankle (7), ankle/back (2), knee (1)|
|Theo Riddick||4||1||1||6||Hamstring (5), toe (1)|
|FB||Montell Owens||1||1||9||11||Hamstring (11)|
|WR||Calvin Johnson||9||4||1||14||Ankle (14)|
|Golden Tate||2||2||Hamstring (1), hip (1)|
|Jeremy Ross||1||1||Ankle (1)|
|TJ Jones||17||17||Shoulder (17)|
|TE||Brandon Pettigrew||3||1||1||5||Foot (5)|
|Eric Ebron||1||2||1||4||Hamstring (4)|
|Joseph Fauria||1||1||5||4||11||Ankle (11)|
|OT||Riley Reiff||1||1||2||Knee (2)|
|LaAdrian Waddle||5||1||1||2||3||12||Knee (5), calf (4), concussion (3)|
|Corey Hilliard||16||16||Foot (16)|
|OG||Rob Sims||1||1||Illness (1)|
|Larry Warford||1||4||5||Knee (5)|
|DE||Ziggy Ansah||6||1||7||Toe (4), knee (2), elbow (1)|
|Jason Jones||1||1||Not injury related (1)|
|George Johnson||4||1||5||Groin (2), foot (1), hamstring (1), illness (1)|
|Darryl Tapp||1||1||Not injury related (1)|
|Devin Taylor||2||2||Knee (2)|
|DT||Ndamukong Suh||1||1||Illness (1)|
|Nick Fairley||2||1||1||8||12||Knee (10), biceps (2)|
|C.J. Mosley||1||1||Not injury related (1)|
|Caraun Reid||2||2||Illness (1), shoulder (1)|
|LB||Stephen Tulloch||14||14||Knee (14)|
|Tahir Whitehead||1||1||Shoulder (1)|
|Josh Bynes||2||2||Illness (1), teeth (1)|
|Ashlee Palmer||2||2||Concussion (1), quad (1)|
|Kyle Van Noy||8
|Travis Lewis||4||11||15||Quadricep (15)|
|CB||Darius Slay||1||1||Shoulder (1)|
|Rashean Mathis||1||1||Ankle (1)|
|Cassius Vaughn||1||1||2||4||Ankle (4)|
|Bill Bentley||16||16||Knee (16)|
|Nevin Lawson||15||15||Foot (15)|
|Mohammed Seisay||1||1||2||Hamstring (2)|
|S||Glover Quin||1||1||Back (1)|
|James Ihedigbo||4||3||7||Neck (3), knee (1), knee/neck (1), back (1), illness (1)|
|Don Carey||3||1||2||6||Hamstring (5), ankle (1)|
|Jerome Couplin||1||1||Ribs (1)|
|LS||Don Muhlbach||1||1||Ankle (1)|
First things first, congratulations to the 21 players who didn't appear on a single final injury report this season: Matthew Stafford, Dan Orlovsky, Kellen Moore, George Winn, Jed Collins, Corey Fuller, Ryan Broyles, Kellen Davis, Cornelius Lucas, Garrett Reynolds, Rodney Austin, Dominic Raiola, Travis Swanson, Larry Webster, Andre Fluellen, DeAndre Levy, Julian Stanford, Josh Thomas, Isa Abdul-Quddus, Matt Prater and Sam Martin.
Okay, now to the bad news. 42 players appeared on at least one final injury report this season. Of those players, TJ Jones was technically injured the most when you count those on injured reserve and the PUP list. This is because he spent the entire season on the PUP list after having shoulder surgery in the offseason. Of course, he was healthy enough to practice in the middle of the season, and he only remained on the PUP list because the Lions didn't have an open roster spot for him, so it's not really fair to declare him the Lions' most-injured player.
Sadly, when you take players on injured reserve and the PUP list out of the equation, Calvin Johnson takes home that distinction. He was on the injury report 14 times over the course of the season. Every appearance was due to a nagging ankle injury that just never fully healed. He actually missed three games and was limited in a couple more because of the injury, and the Lions shut him down for a month or so in the first half of the season. Even so, that injury just never went away.
Aside from Johnson, Nick Fairley and Reggie Bush were the most-injured players who didn't go on IR or the PUP list. Fairley was on the injury report for 12 total weeks, and he missed nine total games. (A knee injury was mainly to blame, but Fairley also dealt with a biceps injury early in the season). As for Bush, he was on the injury report for 10 weeks with a variety of issues. He mainly dealt with an ankle injury, but he also had some back and knee problems.
If we are counting players on IR who opened the season on the active roster, Corey Hilliard and Bill Bentley spent the most time injured this season. This is because both players suffered season-ending injuries in the first game of the season and went on IR after Week 1. This means that they missed 16 games apiece, and this also means that the Lions were without their top nickelback and second-string right tackle for nearly the entire season.
Here are some other stats from the Lions' 2014 injury reports:
- Calvin Johnson led the way in probable designations with nine. Ziggy Ansah was second with six, and LaAdrian Waddle and Joique Bell tied for third with five each.
- When it came to questionable designations, Reggie Bush narrowly edged Johnson by a margin of 5-4. No other player had more than one questionable designation in 2014.
- In the doubtful category, James Ihedigbo edged Eric Ebron by a margin of 3-2. Like the questionable category, no other player had more than one doubtful designation.
- When it came to being ruled out, Nick Fairley led the way with eight out designations. Joseph Fauria was second with five, and Larry Warford and Travis Lewis tied for third with four each.
- The offense had a total of 74 appearances on the injury report, and offensive players combined for 49 total games on injured reserve or the PUP list. On defense, there were 64 appearances on the injury report and 64 total games spent on injured reserve.
- The most-injured positions for the Lions were linebacker (42), cornerback (39), wide receiver (34) and offensive tackle (30). If we take games lost to injured reserve and the PUP list out of the equation, then running back led the way with 22 total appearances on the injury report.
- Quarterback wins the award for the healthiest position in 2014. None of the Lions' three QBs had a single appearance on a final injury report. Granted, Matthew Stafford was the only quarterback who even played during the season, but that's still impressive when you consider how much of an issue injuries were at the beginning of his career and how much abuse he took in 2014.