Lions Notebook: Injury Report; Sledge Could Return

The Detroit Lions returned to work on Monday, even practicing in pads following their four-day hiatus, but the first thing head coach Steve Mariucci noted were the players that remain sidelined.

As expected, cornerback Fernando Bryant (clavicle) missed practice and was on route to have further tests done on his injured shoulder. Pending the results, Bryant is expected to miss the remainder of the season.

"He is going to see Dr. (Kyle) Anderson today to see where he is and where to go from here," acknowledged Mariucci."

Meanwhile, cornerback Vernon Fox (dislocated elbow) missed practice and will likely be held out of Sunday's contest against Tampa Bay. Linebacker Alex Lewis (ankle) also missed practice, but he is expected to be ready to play. Defensive end James Hall (pulled groin) practiced sparingly, but was productive.

Veteran kicker Jason Hanson took a few kicking motion swings in practice. Mariucci said Hanson is "getting closer."

On the offensive side of the football, backup quarterback Jeff Garcia (broken fibula) -- still a few weeks from being ready -- had his cast removed late Monday. The Lions believe Garcia will be ready around late October.

Veteran tailback Shawn Bryson (heel bruise) practice on Monday.

Fullback Will Matthews (knee) was placed on the team's practice squad injury list, securing his place on the team. The team re-signed TE Sean McHugh to the practice squad to fill the void left by Matthews.

The best news, however, could be the imminent return of veteran fullback Cory Schlesinger. Still healing from a broken fibula, Schlesinger has been jogging on the team's underwater treadmill, and could return this Sunday to help boost the team's sluggish running game.

Mariucci was cautiously optimistic that Schlesinger could play, but would not put a classification on his status.

"When you have an injury you can come out with some sort of prognosis and say 'well, 6-8 weeks' and the Tampa game is seven," said Mariucci. "We will just have to wait and see how it feels.

"I want him to have a pretty decent week of practice before we put him out there. If he doesn't have a considerable amount of practice this week, then I am not sure we will put him out there."

Lions Report Top Stories