Lions' WR Rogers Growing Restless

ALLEN PARK - Wide receiver Charles Rogers feels stymied as he prepares to spend the remaining four games of his third NFL season sitting and watching his Lions teammates lose football games.

ALLEN PARK - Wide receiver Charles Rogers feels stymied as he prepares to spend the remaining four games of his third NFL season sitting and watching his Lions teammates lose football games.

"In the back of my mind, I ask questions about myself, but it's not about not being able to play this game, it's not about me being able to help this team," Rogers said Wednesday.

"Do I feel I can help this team? Yes. Can I go out there and make plays for this team? Yes, I can. Would this offense be better if I was out there? No doubt about it."

For some reason, however - and it might be multiple reasons - Rogers, the second player taken in the 2003 draft, is getting limited practice time, was not active for the 21-16 loss to Minnesota on Sunday and appears unlikely to play the rest of this season.

Interim coach Dick Jauron has indicated he will keep four receivers active in the remaining games - Sunday at Green Bay, at home against Cincinnati and the final two road games against New Orleans and Pittsburgh.

Roy Williams is an automatic; he has been the Lions' best receiver the past two seasons.

Eddie Drummond also is an automatic; he is the Lions' kickoff and punt returner, although he virtually never lines up as a receiver.

Scottie Vines, an undrafted player who spent most of his first two seasons on the practice squads at Detroit and Green Bay, has 31 receptions, tied for second on the team, and plays special teams.

That leaves the last receiver position up for competition between Rogers, Troy Edwards and first-round draft pick Mike Williams. Jauron decided on Mike Williams and indicated Wednesday he plans no personnel changes for the Packers game.

In response to reporters' questions, Jauron indicated he considers Rogers no better than the No. 5 receiver on the Lions roster and that he will not be influenced by president Matt Millen's comments last week that the Lions need to develop their young players.

Rogers is not entirely blameless for being caught in his current predicament. He was not to blame for the two broken collarbone injuries that cost him most of his 2003 and 2004 seasons, but he was suspended for four games this season for violating the NFL's substance-abuse policy, and that apparently did not sit well with the Lions.

The team has filed a grievance against Rogers, asking that he repay more than $10 million in bonus money, and former coach Steve Mariucci was not satisfied with the receiver's practice effort when Rogers came back from the suspension.

Rogers has not said he wants out of Detroit, but he says he doesn't feel he's getting straight answers from the team.

"I just wish people would shoot you straight," Rogers said. "I shoot you all straight since day one. I've been holding nothing back ... I don't think I'm getting the same thing back from the other end. And that's like getting the runaround."

SERIES HISTORY: 145th meeting between the Lions and Packers, although the two teams played another six games before the Lions moved from Portsmouth, Ohio, to Detroit in 1934. The Packers lead the series 76-62-6. The Lions beat Green Bay 17-3 in the season opener this year. It was only their second win in the past 10 games between the rivals.


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