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Lions punter Sam Martin among 3 players placed on NFI list, 6 on PUP list

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The Lions will be missing 9 players at the start of training camp.

Detroit Lions v New York Giants Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images

With the start of Detroit Lions training camp just a few days away, the team announced several players that will not be ready to participate right away. In total, the Lions announced nine players who will enter training camp injured, six of which were placed on the physically unable to perform (PUP) list and three who were named to the non-football injury (NFI) list. Here’s the breakdown:

PUP list:

  • DE Armonty Bryant
  • S Don Carey
  • T Taylor Decker
  • S Rolan Milligan
  • T Corey Robinson
  • DE Jeremiah Valoaga

NFI list:

  • T Cyrus Kouandjio
  • P Sam Martin
  • CB Teez Tabor

One name in particular, punter Sam Martin, jumps out as a surprise. Apparently Martin suffered an ankle injury earlier this month away from football. The Lions signed punter Kasey Redfern back in April, so they should have a body until Martin is ready. It is unclear how serious Martin’s injury is at this point, but NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport is reporting that Martin should be ready by Week 1:

The lists also features three offensive tackles. Decker was expected to start the season on the PUP list, as he is only a few month removed from shoulder surgery. Similarly, Cyrus Kouandjio is still recovering from a fall suffered at his home that required hip surgery—hence the non-football injury designation. Finally, Corey Robinson has been out since suffering a foot injury in the regular season finale against the Packers.

This leaves the Lions with a limited amount of bodies to compete for the left tackle job. At this point, it looks like newly-added Greg Robinson is the front-runner to start at the position in training camp.

The good news here is that running back Theo Riddick and offensive guard T.J. Lang were not included on these lists. Riddick’s wrists are reportedly “structurally sound” after undergoing surgery on both wrists. Lang had hip surgery back in January and was unable to participate in organized team activities and minicamp. However, it appears he’s close enough to avoid the PUP list.

As a quick reminder of the rules: any player can immediately come off the PUP or NFI lists once cleared by a doctor. However, once a player is taken off either list, they are no longer eligible for the regular season PUP list. The regular season PUP list is a way for players injured before training camp to be carried onto the regular season roster without taking up a spot on the 53-man list. Players on the regular season PUP list will be inactive for a minimum of six weeks. The NFI and PUP lists essentially work the same way, but players on the NFI list suffered their injuries away from official football activities. Our friends at The Daily Norseman have a full breakdown of the rules.