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Detroit Lions-Houston Texans joint practice recaps, highlights: Rough day for Lions

Seems like the Lions took a step back on Thursday.

NFL: Detroit Lions-Training Camp Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports

After what seemed like a mostly positive day for the Detroit Lions on Wednesday, it appears the Houston Texans struck back during the teams’ second joint-practice session on Thursday.

Pride of Detroit was not on hand again for Thursday’s practice, but here are all of the notable observations from the other beat writers on hand. For full recaps, check out these sources:

Lions offense struggles

As two Lions beat writers noted in their headlines, it sounded like it was a rough day for Matthew Stafford and company. With Marvin Jones Jr. back in Detroit and Danny Amendola taking the day off, Stafford didn’t appear to have the chemistry with his backup receivers, and it resulted in some ugly possessions.

From Rogers:

The drop off in talent at the position was noticeable when the two teams shared the field, and starting quarterback Matthew Stafford struggled working with different weapons. He was picked off three times during the practice, including twice on three plays.

The news may have been worse for the Lions’ offensive line against a stout Texans defensive front, especially for right tackle Rick Wagner:


Patricia/Watt dust up

As briefly explained in the last tweet above, Lions head coach Matt Patricia and Texans defensive end J.J. Watt got into a bit of a verbal spat. Here’s how Meinke tells the story:

Lions coach Matt Patricia and Patriots star JJ Watt exchanged some four-lettered pleasantries in practice today. Watt had beaten Rick Wagner on a play and then got a little closer to Stafford than Patricia liked. Patricia said something about it to Watt, who replied with a [not appropriate for a family publication], and Patricia replied with a [not appropriate for a family publication] of his own. Things settled down from there, so don’t read too much into it.

People love conflict during these joint practices, but it doesn’t sound like there was much here.

Defense wasn’t any better

Though Detroit continues to be without a handful of their best defensive players, it seems like Thursday was a particularly rough day for the Lions defense.

From Harris:

The Texans perimeter guys took part in red zone 7-on-7 against the Lions defense. How successful was that period? Watson and Webb III completed seven straight passes and nearly every one went for a touchdown.


But it wasn’t all bad for the Lions’ defense. According to several Lions beat writers, Thursday was a good day for Devon Kennard—someone we haven’t heard much from in camp.

“In one-on-one pass rush drills, Devon Kennard was a standout among Detroit’s defenders,” Rogers wrote. “He blew around offensive tackle Seantrel Henderson on the first rep, then easily got by guard Martinas Rankin with a swim move on a second snap, rushing from an inside alignment.”

Injury updates

Though Damon Harrison Sr. was activated from the Non-Football Injury list, both he and Trey Flowers did not participate in any team drills. In better news, Jarrad Davis returned to practice after almost two weeks off, though he, too, did not do team drills.

During practice, it appears the Lions suffered a couple injuries. Running back C.J. Anderson limped off the field at one point, but no beat writers provided any sort of update after this:

Additionally, third-string offensive tackle Matt Nelson was apparently carted off late in practice, per Meinke.


It seems like teams may have cut down on highlights from fans and media from Day 2, so all we have are the highly-sanitized official highlights from the Lions: