Pettigrew and Fairley doubtful to play Sunday

Posted by ttwentyman on December 14, 2012 – 5:00 pm

It looks like the Lions could be without tight end Brandon Pettigrew and defensive tackle Nick Fairley Sunday when the team travels to Arizona to take on the Cardinals (4-9).

Both players missed practice all week and are listed as doubtful for Sunday on the injury report.

Pettigrew hurt an ankle in the first quarter of last week’s game at Green Bay. Fairley injured a shoulder in the fourth quarter. Both players did not return to the game.

The Lions have a few different options if Pettigrew is unable to play. Tony Scheffler and Will Heller would be the primary tight ends. Rookie offensive tackle Riley Reiff, who played some tight end in high school, could serve as the third tight end. The Lions also promoted fullback Shaun Chapas from the practice squad. Chapas could also play the third tight end role.

The Lions released receiver Lance Long to make room for Chapas on the active roster.

“(T) Riley (Reiff) has played that,” Lions head coach Jim Schwartz said Friday. “We also have extra wide receivers. We could go a lot of different places.

“And I don’t want to rule Brandon out also. Brandon’s a tough guy and he’s played through a lot. Even though he hasn’t been on the practice field, he doesn’t really need that to be able to get out there on Sunday.

“So we’ll just see where that goes. We’ll have a lot of different groups to be able to bail us out if we have any tight end issues. We went through the whole game basically last time without him.”

The team has listed safety Louis Delmas as questionable with that sore left knee. Delmas played limited snaps two weeks ago against the Colts, but was inactive last week. He’s missed eight games total this season because of the injury.

“What we try to do when he’s been out there … he wasn’t able to go last week, but the weeks before that … I think it was the Houston game that he went and played every snap and then had to come out I think midway through the fourth quarter,” Schwartz said.

“So we changed it around a little bit and tried to spot him. He still played three quarters or 80 percent of our snaps but just tried to limit him a little bit early and try to keep his availability throughout the game.”

Safety Don Carey (knee), cornerback Chris Houston (hamstring), receiver Calvin Johnson (knee), cornerback Jacob Lacey (foot, Achilles) and tackle Corey Hilliard (knee) are all listed as probable.

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Pettigrew and Fairley miss practice again

Posted by ttwentyman on December 14, 2012 – 12:57 pm

Tight end Brandon Pettigrew and defensive tackle Nick Fairley missed practice for a third consecutive time this week, putting into question their availability for Sunday’s game at Arizona.

The Lions will release their official game designations at 4 p.m. today on

Pettigrew left last week’s game in Green Bay in the first quarter with an ankle injury and did not return. He’s been wearing a protective boot for most of the week.

Fairley left in the fourth quarter with a shoulder injury and didn’t return. He spoke to reporters earlier in the week and was hopeful he could play Sunday.

The Lions could be in a situation where they have to make a roster transaction to add depth to the tight end group if it’s determined Pettigrew can’t play. The Lions have only Tony Scheffler and Will Heller healthy at this point. They usually have three tight ends active on the game-day roster.

Safety Louis Delmas was also absent from the portion of practice open to the media after being a limited participant in practice on Thursday. Delmas did not play in Green Bay last week.

The team was also without defensive end Kyle Vanden Bosch at practice, who was likely getting a day of rest.

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Linehan thinks Stafford could be one of the best ever

Posted by ttwentyman on December 14, 2012 – 12:20 pm

Lions offensive coordinator Scott Linehan spoke to the media Thursday and reiterated his belief that Matthew Stafford can be one of the best quarterback’s to ever play the game.

His comments are getting a lot of play in national media outlets.

“I don’t know where Peyton (Manning) was after four years exactly, but I think that Matt’s definitely on track to be one of the best quarterbacks ever to play this position,” Linehan said.

“He’s in an age of great quarterbacks. He’s not going to be mentioned in that category yet until we put together two or three seasons, like we did last year, in a row.

“Finish this season out strong, you look at the end of the year, see his numbers after two years, I mean it’s hard to say that there’s a lot of quarterbacks that have done that.”

Stafford, 24, is the reigning Comeback Player of the Year and needs to average 331.3 yards per game over the final three weeks to join Drew Brees as the only quarterbacks in NFL history to hit 5,000 yards in a season twice. He’s close to 12,000 career yards and has 77 touchdowns in 42 career starts.

Here is the full video of Linehan’s comments to the press regarding Stafford:

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