By: Will Burchfield

Lions All-Rookie left tackle Taylor Decker underwent shoulder surgery on Monday and could miss at least part of the 2017 season.

Decker injured the shoulder last week during OTAs.

“We’ll see how he progresses along, the doctors will give us updates as he goes,” said Jim Caldwell on Tuesday. “But he injured it in practice last week, got it repaired yesterday and he’s on the road to recovery.”

Asked how long the team expects Decker to be sidelined, Caldwell replied, “Not certain. We’ll probably give you an update when we get back to training camp.”

Training camp begins in mid July.

Caldwell confirmed Decker will be out at least through next week’s minicamp and left open the possibility that he could miss part of the upcoming season.

“Anytime that you’ve had surgery you just don’t know the details of how long it’ll actually take, but we’ll update you in the fall,” Caldwell said.

Could Decker miss the duration of the 2017 season?

“I don’t think so. But like I said, I’m not a physician. I would anticipate we’ll be able to update you, like I said, when we get started in the fall and see where he is,” said Caldwell.

NFL preseason gets underway August 10.

OTAs are light on contact, so Decker’s injury is surprising. Caldwell declined to “get into all the details about it,” but allowed, “Sometimes they’re non-contact injuries. I didn’t say this was one of them but I’m just (saying) it doesn’t require any forceful contact to happen.”

“One of the things you can assure is we’ve been practicing the same way for years and years and years,” Caldwell added. “We got spotters out there, NFLPA, everyone else, we’ve never been cited, we’ve never had an issue in that regard. We comply by the rules, but things happen sometimes in practice. It’s just the nature of the business.”

Caldwell said the Lions will look both internally and externally for potential replacements, with Joe Dahl and Cornelius Lucas taking most of Decker’s reps for the time being.


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