Jones necessary to defeat Giants

Detroit Lions running back Kevin Jones' recovery from the devastating Lisfranc injury he suffered last year has been nothing short of impressive. Much more inside, including Jones' importance in Sunday's contest against New York. Quotes from head coach Rod Marinelli also inside on Jones' health status.

Detroit Lions running back Kevin Jones' recovery from the devastating Lisfranc injury he suffered last year has been nothing short of impressive.

When Jones suffered the injury last December many questioned its severity causing speculation about his future in Detroit. Some believed Jones would be sidelined for the majority of the 2007 season, some believed the entire season and others even suggested his career in Detroit may be over.

However, he was on the active roster by Week 3 of this season -- and hasn't missed a game since.

Jones has seemingly gotten stronger with every game he's played, leading some people to believe that the injury is no longer a concern –- which would be inaccurate. The former Virginia Tech standout still feels soreness in his foot throughout the week during practice, and is said to have a noticeable limp early in the days immediately following games.

During Friday's press conference head coach Marinelli was asked about Jones being hobbled.

"This is a normal Friday for him," responded Marinelli.

This has lead to suspicion that the coaching staff may sit Jones for Sunday's game against New York in order to have him available for the Thanksgiving Day game (Green Bay) this Thursday, as people may place more importance on an intra-divisional game. However, Marinelli dismissed those rumors.

"That makes sense to you," asked Marinelli. "We just want to have a chance to keep evaluating him right now, where he's at, and see how he feels."

This week's game may have as much – if not more – playoff implication than the contest against the Green Bay Packers. The Lions will be playing the Giants (6-3), who are currently two games behind the division-leading Dallas Cowboys. In December both the Lions and the Giants playoff aspirations may rely on winning a wild card spot, making this week's contest an important one.

The Lions' chances of winning greatly improve if Jones is healthy.

This season the Lions have averaged 109.2 rushing yards in their six victories and only 29.6 rushing yards in their three defeats. They are also undefeated in games where Jones has received 15 or more carries. Since Jones' rookie season the Lions are 8-1 he Jones carries the ball 20 or more times.

Although nothing is certain, Marinelli appears confident Jones will play.

"He's kind of always been like this during the week," said Marinelli. "…We'll see how he finishes, but I think he feels pretty good."

The Lions rush for the playoffs may start this week, and any playoff run they may hope for will rely on Jones' foot.


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