The Detroit Lions currently have 10 players on injury lists, and over the next few weeks, a few of those players will become eligible to be activated from their injury designations. Here’s an updated overview of the Lions’ injured players and when they are eligible to return. Note: bolded players are currently eligible.
- QB Hendon Hooker (ACL): NFI — eligible to return at any time
- QB Nate Sudfeld (ACL): IR — season-ending
- RB Zonovan Knight (shoulder): IR — season-ending
- FB Jason Cabinda (knee): IR — eligible to return in Week 9
- TE Shane Zylstra (knee): IR — season-ending
- OT Matt Nelson (ankle): IR — eligible to return in Week 8
- EDGE Josh Paschal (knee): IR — has started 21-day evaluation clock
- EDGE James Houston (fibula): IR — eligible to return in Week 7
- CB Emmanuel Moseley (ACL): IR — season-ending
- DB C.J. Gardner-Johnson (pectoral): IR — eligible to return in Week 7
As a reminder, NFL teams are only eligible to return eight players from injured reserve in a given season, and with Julian Okwara returning to the active roster in Week 5, and CB/KR Khalil Dorsey returning in Week 6, the Lions only have six available options remaining.
As you can see from the above list, in addition to quarterback Hendon Hooker and defensive lineman Josh Paschal (who has begun practicing), the two new players eligible to return this week are defensive back C.J. Gardner-Johnson and pass-rushing linebacker James Houston.
While Gardner-Johnson and Houston are eligible, neither are expected to be close to returning until late in the season.
“The reports that we’ve gotten back on it is that it was a very clean injury and that’s normally good for surgery, recovery, all of those things,” Campbell said of Gardner-Johnson. “So I certainly think there’s a chance that we get him back.”
Gardner-Johnson has said on social media that he believes he could return by the Divisional round of the NFL Playoffs, which would be a boost for the team, but also feels like a very long way away.
Houston is in a similar situation, as it’s possible he will return late in the season if he heals quickly.
“He may be very similar to (Gardner-Johnson) Ducey,” Campbell said. “Could be (the) end of the year potentially, but there again, I don’t want to sit here and tell you, ‘Yes,’ and then we don’t get him back. But I do think there’s a chance by the end of the year we could get him back.”
So for now, it appears we are in for a long wait for Gardner-Johnson and Houston. But be sure to check back with Pride of Detroit for updates on all the players on the injury lists during our weekly injury reports.