Luckily for the Detroit Lions, their starting five offensive linemen have evaded the injury bug during all of training camp and through two weeks of preseason. Their play may leave much to be desired, but they still have their health.
For the handful of players vying for roster spots behind them, however, it is a very different story. Wednesday’s practice was another reminder of how many offensive linemen are trying to battle through injuries to justify a roster spot.
Graham Glasgow, Corey Robinson and Michael Ola all sat out of Wednesday’s practice. Glasgow appears to have suffered from a mild leg injury during Friday’s preseason game against the Bengals. He has yet to practice since then and was briefly spotted in a walking boot. He is out of the boot now, but for a third-round pick the Lions are trying to mold as a starter, the missed time is crucial to his development.
Robinson, who actually had an impressive second preseason game, needs this playing time more than any offensive linemen. He already missed some time earlier in camp when he started on the PUP list, and now he has missed three straight practices with an unknown ailment. The Lions do not have a ton of depth at tackle, and Robinson has a real chance to make this roster, but with versatile — and more importantly, healthy — options in Joe Dahl and Geoff Schwartz, Robinson’s spot will become expendable if he can’t get on the field.
That brings us to Michael Ola, the Lions’ clear No. 1 offensive tackle backup. Ola, too, was spotted in a walking boot after limping off practice nine days ago. While Ola hasn’t returned to practice yet, he does appear to be making his way back soon:
Ola was walking fine with no boot in the locker room, fwiw— Dave Birkett (@davebirkett) August 24, 2016
Although Ola is not expected to be a starter in 2016, he is valuable depth along the offensive line. Ola was rushed into the starting lineup late in 2015 at right tackle and was one of the best linemen during the last half of the season. The Lions would feel much better about their offensive line insurance plan if Ola is healthy.
In other injury news, Eric Ebron did not practice after returning as a very light participant on Tuesday. Linebackers Josh Bynes and Jon Bostic continue to sit out while recovering for longer-term injuries. Also, safety Isaiah Johnson was out.