After a full week of unrestricted practices, Detroit Lions running back D’Andre Swift made his return to the lineup against the Miami Dolphins last Sunday. While he did find the end zone on a nice route and catch early in the game, his overall performance was underwhelming. The former second-round pick had just five carries for six yards.
Despite only carrying the ball five times (and catching five passes), coach Dan Campbell told 97.1 The Ticket on Tuesday morning that he believes they may have given Swift too many opportunities.
“We probably gave Swift one too many carries,” Campbell said. “We love Swift. Glad he’s out there, but he’s not back. He’s given us what he has, but it’s just not... you know, and so maybe give another one of those carries to Jamaal.”
That’s an eye-opening statement from Campbell. It suggests that despite being listed as “full participant” in all of last week’s practices, Swift is still very much hampered by his shoulder and ankle injuries.
Swift himself talked to the media on Monday, and confirmed he wasn’t 100 percent, but seemed to suggest his role is ready to increase going forward.
“Definitely going forward, the plan is to progress and just keep better each day,” Swift said. “As I get better each day, the role will get bigger.”
Swift hasn’t taken a full workload since Week 1, when he ran for 144 yards on 15 carries and caught three passes for an addition 31 yards against the Eagles. Since that game, he has made three game appearances with just 17 carries total.
Campbell says they will continue to monitor Swift for the rest of the season and gauge how ready he is for more touches on a week-to-week basis. Everyone wants him out there on the field, but if he’s not himself out there, he’s not doing anyone favors.
“He’s out there and he wanted to give it a go, and we appreciate that,” Campbell said. “But we always have to gauge that. We’ll see where he’s at this week. That’s something that we’ve thought about. We want to make sure that he’s up to feeling himself and that we can get the most out of him. Whatever those are—even if that’s just 10 reps. We’ll gauge that this week. He’ll come out here and work and practice, and we’ll see where it goes.”