The Detroit Lions are the healthiest they have been in some time, and despite a handful of players missing Wednesday’s practice, they were able to return starting right guard Evan Brown to practice.
Let’s take a look at the team’s injury report as they prepare to take on the Minnesota Vikings in Week 14.
- RB Craig Reynolds (IR, ribs): eligible to return at any time
- WR Trinity Benson (knee, IR): eligible to return in Week 15 (latest update)
- OL Tommy Kraemer (back, IR): eligible to return at any time
- EDGE Charles Harris (groin, IR): eligible to return in Week 17 (latest update)
- EDGE Julian Okwara (elbow, IR): eligible to return in Week 17 (latest update)
- DB Bobby Price (knee, IR): eligible to return at any time
21-day evaluation clock
- WR Quintez Cephus (foot, IR): Day 1 (latest update)
Cephus injured his foot earlier in the season and is finally able to begin practicing again. Wednesday will be the first in his 21 days evaluation period. While the Lions have been returning bodies at wide receiver, Cephus brings a different style of play to the position. If history holds, don’t expect the Lions to be in any rush to bring him back into the fold, but they will put him in play once he is medically cleared.
No practice on Wednesday
- QB Nate Sudfeld (illness) — New injury
- WR Kalif Raymond (illness) — New injury
- LT Taylor Decker (elbow) — New injury
- C Frank Ragnow (foot) — Downgraded from full practice
- G Kayode Awosika (ankle) — New injury
- LB Derrick Barnes (knee) — New injury, occurred vs. Jaguars
- CB Jeff Okudah (illness) — New injury
- S DeShon Elliott (ankle) — New injury
The Lions have a bit of an illness breakout, with quarterback Nate Sudfeld, wide receiver Kalif Raymond and cornerback Jeff Okudah all sitting out. Typically this early in the week, this doesn’t threaten a player’s availability for a Sunday game, but it’s worth monitoring throughout the week.
Decker is dealing with a new elbow injury, but he did play every snap in last week’s game against the Jaguars, so this could be a precautionary thing for him. He was out on the field during practice, so it doesn’t appear to be serious.
Ragnow has recently been taking Wednesday practices as the veteran manages his foot injury late in the season. If he follows the pattern from previous weeks, expect him to get in a limited practice on Thursday, followed by a full practice in Friday, then good-to-go on Sunday.
Awosika, too, played every snap on Sunday, so his injury may not be considered serious. Plus, with the return of Evan Brown to practice—who will likely take over at right guard if fully healthy—the Lions don’t need a sense of urgency to get him back in the lineup.
Barnes briefly left the Lions game against the Jaguars but he was able to return to the field and played on 36-percent of defensive snaps. This could simply be a rest day for his knee—as is typical—or, worse case scenario, a potential setback. We will know more on Thursday.
Lastly, Elliott is another player who played every snap against the Jaguars. Losing him would be a significant loss, as he’s been playing well as of late, including notching a key forced fumble in Sunday’s game.
- RG Evan Brown (ankle) — Upgraded from no practice
Brown was injured in Week 11 (against the Giants) and has been unable to practice since. The Lions have tried replacing him with Dan Skipper and Kayode Awosika, but Brown clearly remains the team’s best option at right guard. If he is able to return to game action this week, it’ll be a big boost for the Lions offense.
- RB D’Andre Swift (ankle) — Downgrade from full practice
Swift was off the injury report completely last week, but it appears he’s still being bothered by the ankle injury he suffered earlier in the season.
No longer listed with an injury
- LG Jonah Jackson (concussion)
- S Ifeatu Melifonwu (illness)
- RT Penei Sewell (ankle)
- EDGE Josh Paschal (knee)
- CB Chase Lucas (hamstring)
The players listed in this section no longer have an injury that requires them to be listed on the daily practice report.
Vikings injury report
Here’s a look at the Vikings’ initial injury report:
First #Vikings injury report of Week 14 pic.twitter.com/HITWtb4MoB— Minnesota Vikings (@Vikings) December 7, 2022