The Detroit Lions announced on Thursday that quarterback Tim Boyle and defensive tackle Da’Shawn Hand have been placed on injured reserve. The moves create two necessary roster spots that have been used to re-sign tight end Darren Fells and safety Dean Marlowe, both of whom were released earlier this week to make roster spots for Detroit’s two waiver claims. With new injured reserve rules still in place, both Boyle and Hand are eligible to return to play after just three weeks.
For Boyle, the wait will likely be longer than that. The Lions reserve quarterback broke his thumb in Detroit’s preseason finale and had surgery on it earlier this week. Per a report from NFL Network, Boyle is expected to miss six to eight weeks with the injury. In the meantime, David Blough will serve as backup for Jared Goff, and Steven Montez has signed to the practice squad as an emergency option.
It’s unclear how much time Hand will miss. On August 10, Hand suffered a groin injury, and while initially head coach Dan Campbell indicated it wasn’t serious, Hand hasn’t returned to practice since.
“Obviously, it ended up being a little more than we thought it would be, so he’s going to be out here for a little bit,” Campbell said last week. “They’re kinda hoping that this thing—maybe we get him back before the season starts but we’ll see where it goes.”
The Lions should be able to withstand Hand’s absence, as they are currently still carrying six defensive tackles: Michael Brockers, Alim McNeill, Nick Williams, Levi Onwuzurike, John Penisini and Kevin Strong.