Williams, Streets Ready To Step Up

While it was immediately obvious the injury to Charles Rogers was a serious one, Detroit Lions head coach Steve Mariucci, in his weekly press conference updated the media on the injury status of the team. His report contained a few surprises. Much more inside, including Streets' setting example for Rogers to follow.

(ALLEN PARK) - While it was immediately obvious the injury to Charles Rogers was a serious one, Detroit Lions head coach Steve Mariucci, in his weekly press conference updated the media on the injury status of the team. His report contained a few surprises.

Defensive end James Hall suffered a broken thumb, but is expected to attempt to play over the injury. Additionally, fullback Paul Smith is slated for surgery on his injured shoulder which likely puts him out for the season and linebacker Teddy Lehman and cornerback Fernando Bryant both suffered mild concussions but are expected to start on Sunday.

These injuries were in addition to the announcement that second year receiver Charles Rogers would be lost for the season.

"[Dr.]Kyle Anderson (the team's physician) is getting other opinions. He is talking to other experts in the field, doing his homework right now. Hopefully after the surgery and whatever is done to it, it is going to be stronger than ever before.

It is going to be lengthy. He did say that if there are screws or plates or anything like that put on the clavicle, that he would be able to start rehabbing sooner than he did a year ago when he just had to let that thing calm down and calcify by itself without any surgery.

"The old injury healed real strong. There is a lot of calcification on it. It is stronger than the rest of the bone. This will be a shorter rehab for him, but nevertheless, he'll miss the season."

Williams, Streets ready to step up

Mariucci indicated that he was happy with the play of rookie receiver Roy Williams and that Tai Streets will also play a bigger role.

"If you watch [Williams], they were trying to roll him up a little bit, put a safety over the top, they were trying to grab him at the line of scrimmage. He threw the DB down one time, just threw him down and released.

He made the spectacular catch that you saw. He got in there and blocked a little bit. I saw him have some words with some other guys. I think people try to intimidate rookies, so they always have some kind words for them.

But I think it was a good game for him, and I think you'll see a lot more of him as time goes on. He enjoys the game, he gets it, he going to get better and better as we go. I'm anxious to watch him play this season."

Regarding Streets, Mariucci held him as an example for Rogers to follow.

"He's a very important player. He's been a starter on a playoff team, so he's a very capable guy. Tai is a quiet guy. He does his work, he's business like, he's a pro, he's capable and now you're going to hear more of him. I'm glad we got him because he was a very important acquisition this year.

"There's another example. He blows his Achilles out playing basketball over there in Ann Arbor before the draft, rather than getting drafted high, he gets taken late to redshirt. So he had to be patient and you had to just know that going in. So he had a rough start to his career as well. Then he broke his leg. He has a rod in his leg. He had some tough luck too.

"There's an analogy for Charles Rogers to lean on where a guy has some tough luck early in his career, but has come back from it and played very well and will have a fine career."

Mariucci admitted that there were some ackward moments when he had to tell veteran defensive end Robert Porcher that he would be inactive.

"I told Robert that there was a possibility that he would be inactive. That's not exactly what he wanted to hear, but he was a professional, he was good on the sideline, he was on the trip, he's available, he's ready. If we need him at anytime, he'll be ready to go."

Getting ready for Houston

Mariucci said Detroit will add a wide receiver to the roster and that adding a corner is also a possibility.

"The plan there would be to add another player at wide receiver. We haven't decided quite yet (who that will be). David Kircus is a candidate. We'll see how that goes. We'll let you know when it is all official."

He also wants to improve the running game. He felt that rookie Kevin Jones missed a few holes that could have resulted in longer gains.

"There were some reads where we could have done something a little bit different, rather than bouncing outside, maybe take it inside. It's the difference, maybe, between having a two-yard loss and a six-yard gain. We're going to learn from that.

"We had the one touchdown called back and some of those sorts of things. I'm more on the optimistic side after watching this game than on the discouraged side because we were close to making some real nice plays. That will come around as we go."

Detroit hosts the Houston Texans - in the first meeting ever between the two teams - for their home opener Sunday at 1:00pm at Ford Field. The game will be televised on CBS 62 in the Detroit area.

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