By Chris Morgan

GLENDALE, AZ - SEPTEMBER 15:  Quarterback Matthew Stafford #9 of the Detroit Lions watches from the sidelines during the NFL game against the Arizona Cardinals at the University of Phoenix Stadium on September 15, 2013 in Glendale, Arizona.  The Carindals defeated the Lions 25-21.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

(Credit, Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

The Detroit Lions came close to moving to 2-0 last week, but they gave up a late lead to the Arizona Cardinals on the road. Now, they head across the country to face Washington. The Redskins have really struggled on defense this year, and the Lions could put up big numbers in this game. That is, if some key offensive players are able to take the field, including a certain oft-injured running back who was signed to a big deal this offseason.

For starters, the Lions have a couple of injuries on their offensive line, a line that has held up well thus far. Offensive tackle Jason Fox missed last week’s game with a groin injury, and he did not practice on Wednesday. Detroit was able to deal without him against the Cardinals, just in case they don’t have Fox again. Additionally, offensive guard Rob Sims has been added to the injury report with a knee injury. He was able to practice on a limited basis, but is expected to be able to play. So, if the Lions are missing a starting offensive lineman, it will likely be Fox.

The other notable player on offense who may miss the game is running back Reggie Bush, who left the Arizona game with a knee injury. He’s been banged up so far this year, and he did not practice on Wednesday. If he can’t play, and that seems like a real possibility, Joique Bell will get the start. Bell is a very similar player to Bush, and he is almost as good. If Bell gets to start, against this defense, he could have a big game. Also, Mikel Leshoure might actually get some playing time.

On defense, it is the same two key names on defense that are injured. Defensive tackle Nick Fairley missed last Sunday’s game with a shoulder injury, and his presence was missed. He was able to practice on a limited basis on Wednesday. It would be big for the Lions to get him back. Combining him with Ndamukong Suh is huge for this defense, and they could make things tough on Robert Griffin III. If he can’t play, C.J. Mosley will start again, to the excitement of nobody.

The other player is frequent injury reporter mainstay safety Louis Delmas. His knee is bothering him, and he did not participate on Wednesday in practice. However, his practice time has been spotty thus far, and he has played when the games have rolled around. He is just as important to Detroit’s defense as Fairley. Sure, the Lions should be able to score on Washington, but if they can’t stop them, they could still lose.

These injuries put the Lions in a precarious position. If all of them can play, which is possible, then Detroit should win. If none of them can go, a loss seems likely. It will likely be somewhere in between, but who can go remains a mystery that won’t be solved until Sunday.


  • Guard Rob Sims (knee)


  • Running back Reggie Bush (knee)
  • Safety Louis Delmas (knee)
  • Defensive tackle Nick Fairley (shoulder)
  • Tackle Jason Fox (groin)

For more Lions news and updates, visit Lions Central.

Chris Morgan has been a diehard Detroit Lions fan through the good (Barry Sanders) and the bad (Matt Millen) and that love has led him to take jobs writing about sports, including as a fantasy sports “expert.” His work can be found on .


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