Marinelli not concerned with team's injuries

On Sunday, Marinelli said he wasn't overly concerned with the team's infirmary report, which is made up primarily of starters on both the offensive and defensive line. Because each injury is considered transitory, the coach expects most of the players to be ready by opening week. Much more inside.

With a laundry list of injuries after two weeks of training camp, Lions' head coach Rod Marinelli is simply thankful none of them are serious.

Knock on wood.

On Sunday, Marinelli said he wasn't overly concerned with the team's infirmary report, which is made up primarily of starters on both the offensive and defensive line. Because each injury is considered transitory, the coach expects most of the players to be ready by opening week.

"I feel good about all of them really," said Marinelli. "I think by game-week they all should be good. We're counting on all of those guys."

Marinelli expects the right side of his offensive line -- tackle Rex Tucker and guard Damien Woody -- to return, along with the core of the team's defensive line in tackles Shaun Rogers and Shaun Cody. Linebacker Boss Bailey is a possibility to start against Seattle in week one.

Despite their absence, the Lions performed well in Friday's 20-13 win over Denver, including an impressive defensive stand late in the contest. Marinelli attributed the play to the team's collective discipline and field awareness.

"You can go out and play sometimes with guys that are just really hustling and doing all those things, he said. "You play your gap control and do all those things exactly right. You may be able to play, at times, with lesser talented guys that are really disciplined.

"We created some havoc in the backfield with these guys, I was really impressed with that. It all starts with the discipline. Then the talent issues come into play. To have the talent and not discipline, it doesn't work. The defense doesn't work."

The news on tight end Casey FitzSimmons, receiver Scottie Vines and middle linebacker Teddy Lehman wasn't as certain

Vines and Lehman remain on the physically-unable-to-perform (PUP) list and neither has played any snaps at camp. Marinelli stressed patience with the two players injuries, but listed Vines as day-to-day. Lehman is a projected starter while Vines was one of Detroit's primary downfield threats a year ago.

The team is still awaiting results of FitzSimmons MRI, and they made also consider signing an additional tight end depending on his status.

McCown or Orlovsky?: Detroit's coaching staff surprised everyone after second-year quarterback Dan Orlovsky replaced Jon Kitna earlier in the first quarter on Friday. Off-season acquisition Josh McCown had taken the majority of reptitions with the second-team offense in camp.

Marinelli said the coaching staff will evaluate the performances of both McCown and Orlovsky during the week to see who would play backup next Friday.

"He's come along (but) it's just one week," said Marinelli, who lauded Orlovsky's accuracy and leadership. "I don't look too far. Tonight and tomorrow morning is as far as I'm going."

Added Marinelli on Orlovsky, "I think we all felt he would be like this. That's the first time I've got to see him in a live situation and he was very impressive."

Tough on the players -- and on himself: Despite winning on Friday during his first game as an NFL head coach, Marinelli wasn't content with his own performance.

"Not good enough. You're never good enough," responded Marinelli after asking what he graded himelf. "I'm just working hard every night at it -- situations, situations. It's fun -- it's a ball. You've just got to work at those things and be on top of if. It was a fairly smooth game."

Marinelli was pleased with the decisions of his coordinators, both Mike Martz and Donnie Henderson, who seemed to be one step ahead of Denver's coaching staff.

"Those guys are pros and on (the headset)," said Marinelli. "All three of those guys are really good; Donnie (Henderson); Chuck (Preifer) and obviously Coach Martz. They're real pros. That was good."

No Calhoun?: Rookie running back Brian Calhoun didn't see the field during Friday's win, but Marinelli said it was due to a lack of snaps available.

"We had 46 snaps on offense," said Marinelli. "We had a lot of guys to look at and the game went fast. Those things happen."


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