Chris Hovan's hold on his starting job was tenuous at best heading into this week, but it took a turn for the worse Friday when Hovan was sent home from practice suffering from symptoms of the flu.
Hovan and linebacker E.J. Henderson were both knocked out by the flu bug, but Henderson returned to practice and is still expected to start Sunday vs. the Lions. Hovan's disposition could be much different.
After last week's performance by rookie Spencer Johnson, Hovan's starting job was already in trouble – as the Vikings appear to be less interested in keeping meaningless game streaks alive at the detriment of the team. If Hovan doesn't play, Johnson will get his first start. In just 28 plays last week, Johnson had seven tackles. In nine starts and full games this year, Hovan has just 17 tackles.
Both Hovan and Henderson were added to the injury report, but listed as probable.
* Detroit is 3-2 on the road, as opposed to an awful 1-3 at home this season.
* Through 10 weeks, NFL teams have averaged 42.3 points a game – the highest such total since 1990 and the fourth-highest since the league adopted the 16-game schedule.
* Mike Tice has a 4-0 record vs. the Lions and is 2-0 head-to-head with Steve Mariucci.
* Daunte Culpepper has a 7-0 career record vs. the Lions.
* Randy Moss played the role of Lions wide receiver Roy Williams on the scout team – the first time in three weeks Moss has practiced near full speed. He is still listed as doubtful and, as of Friday, the plan remained to hold him out until next week's game with the Jaguars.
Hovan, Hendu Down With The Flu
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