Detroit Lions’ Everson Griffen returns from COVID list, Taylor Decker misses practice

Detroit Free Press

Dave Birkett
| Detroit Free Press

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The Detroit Lions got some good news in an otherwise rough week Wednesday when they activated defensive end Everson Griffen off the reserve/COVID-19 list.

Griffen, who missed losses to the Green Bay Packers and Tennessee Titans after testing positive for the novel coronavirus, was a full participant in practice Wednesday and should play Saturday against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

The Lions have played without several key defensive contributors in recent weeks, including Griffen, Trey Flowers, Da’Shawn Hand, Jeff Okudah and Desmond Trufant, and their defense could be without coordinator Cory Undlin and all three position coaches Saturday.

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Griffen, who has 2½ sacks in five games since his midseason trade with the Dallas Cowboys, could give a lift to a defense that has one sack the past two weeks, though the Lions could be without several other defensive starters.

The Lions (5-9) placed defensive tackle Danny Shelton on injured reserve Wednesday, and top linebacker Jamie Collins missed his second straight practice with a neck injury.

Five other players did not practice Wednesday, including three starters on the offensive line: Left tackle Taylor Decker (groin), right tackle Tyrell Crosby (ankle) and center Frank Ragnow (throat).

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Kicker Matt Prater (back) and receiver Kenny Golladay (hip) also missed practice.

Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford, who remains limited by groin and thumb injuries, said he his ribs are “still sore” but he has given “not much, if any” thought to sitting out the final two games.

“I want to go out there and play,” he said. “As far as how I’m feeling, it’s the end of the season. I’ve got a few things here and there, but was able to make it through last game without getting much worse, if any, so I feel good about my chances to try and be out there this week”

Contact Dave Birkett at Follow him on Twitter @davebirkett.

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