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Friday open thread: Which injured Lions will return after the bye week?

Just how hobbled will the Lions be next week vs. the Steelers?

NFL: Detroit Lions at New Orleans Saints Chuck Cook-USA TODAY Sports

The Detroit Lions are entering the bye week at a perfect time considering their laundry list of injuries. But before you know it, they’ll be back at practice. In fact, they’re just five days away from practicing in the leadup to the Sunday night game against the Steelers next week (presuming that they start their week of practice on Wednesday, per usual).

So today’s Question of the Day is:

Which Lions players do you think will be back for Sunday’s game against the Steelers?

Before I get into my predictions, the following players are either injured or missed practice on Tuesday for an unknown reason:

  • QB Matthew Stafford (ankle)
  • WR Golden Tate (shoulder)
  • WR Kenny Golladay (hamstring)
  • WR TJ Jones (unknown)
  • OT Taylor Decker (PUP - torn labrum)
  • OT Greg Robinson (ankle)
  • G T.J. Lang (back)
  • G Emmett Cleary (ankle)
  • DE Ezekiel Ansah (knee)
  • DE Anthony Zettel (unknown)
  • DT A’Shawn Robinson (unknown)
  • LB Paul Worrilow (knee)
  • S Glover Quin (concussion)
  • P Sam Martin (ankle)

My answer: I’m going to separate the 14 players listed above into categories. These are just educated guesses on their status, so please don’t take them as any sort of insider information.

Confident will be ready Sunday:

  • Matthew Stafford
  • TJ Jones
  • T.J. Lang
  • Ezekiel Ansah
  • Anthony Zettel
  • A’Shawn Robinson
  • Paul Worrilow
  • Sam Martin

TJ Jones, Anthony Zettel and A’Shawn Robinson are dealing with unknown issues, but they all finished out Sunday’s game against the Saints. I’m definitely not worried about A’Shawn, considering the Lions only have three defensive tackles right now.

I’m confident Worrilow will be back, because according to Kyle Meinke, he was running with a trainer on the sidelines during Tuesday’s practice. He was also expected to be out just a few weeks, so this would fit that timeline.

50/50 shot vs. Steelers

  • Kenny Golladay
  • Greg Robinson

Robinson apparently was in a boot after the game, but was out of it earlier this week with a heavily taped ankle, instead. Golladay has missed three straight games with a hamstring injury and is probably trending towards playing, but he still hasn’t practiced in full in about a month.

Probably a few weeks away

  • Golden Tate
  • Emmett Cleary
  • Taylor Decker
  • Glover Quin

Of all these, I’m hoping I’m most wrong about Quin. Concussion recovery is hard to predict. Quin’s injury looked particularly bad, but consider the nasty hit that drove Packers receiver Davante Adams immediately to the hospital. Despite suffering a concussion, Adams played in the very next game. In other words, it wouldn’t be completely out of the question for Quin to return next Sunday, but I’d honestly rather see him take a game or two off.

The rest seem pretty obvious. Decker is not off the PUP yet and will probably need to practice for a week or two before returning to the lineup. Cleary was in a boot earlier in the week. Golden Tate will reportedly miss a few weeks.

Your turn.