Lions may sit Calvin Johnson

ByMichael Rothstein ESPN logo
Monday, October 6, 2014

ALLEN PARK, Mich. -- Detroit Lions coach Jim Caldwell said Monday he considered sitting Calvin Johnson last week against Buffalo and will consider sitting the wide receiver this week against Minnesota to help heal his ailing right ankle.

"Just being straightforward, I'm going to think about it again this week," Caldwell said. "Strongly. So we'll see."

Johnson appeared to re-injure the ankle on the second play of the third quarter against Buffalo after catching a 7-yard pass from quarterback Matthew Stafford. It was Johnson's only reception and target of the game. He clutched his leg after the play ended and hobbled off the field.

He soon went into the locker room and did not return. After the game, Caldwell said Johnson took a "pretty good whack" on his leg and that he would be evaluated further Monday. On Monday, Caldwell declined to give any information about Johnson's further evaluation.

Johnson has missed Wednesday and Thursday practices the past two weeks, has practiced both Fridays and has been limited Sundays against the Jets and the Bills.

Last Friday, Caldwell said the "possibility always exists" that he would sit Johnson for a game if the ankle didn't heal.

"Just kind of depends on how one progresses during the course of the week," Caldwell said Friday. "There are some times that they move forward enough that they won't have any significant setbacks and other times you don't feel that way. You have to wait until the end of the week and react accordingly."

Caldwell declined to give an update on running back Reggie Bush, who injured his ankle Sunday and did not return.

Bush, said he "feels good," and that he is planning on preparing as if he will be available against the Vikings on Sunday. He said his ankle injury is "day-to-day" right now, but once again he was walking around the locker room Monday pretty good.

Bush said he didn't realize he injured his ankle until he was getting ready for the next play. He said he had further tests on the ankle, but he had not received the results.

Caldwell did say, though, he was hopeful Detroit's other main running back, Joique Bell, would be available on Sunday. Bell missed the game against Buffalo as he recovered from a concussion suffered against the Jets.

"Certainly we're hoping so, but obviously he has to be evaluated this week," Caldwell said. "Protocol that has to be followed and we'll see how that goes."

Bell said he hopes to play Sunday -- but he hopes to play every week.

The concussion he sustained came when he was blocking in pass protection on a completion to Ryan Broyles late in the third quarter. He had two carries after he took the hit before leaving the game.

"I didn't really know," Bell said. "I came to the sideline. They ran a couple tests and that's when they kind of knew what it was and we took it from there."

Bell said he feels normal again. He was cleared for physical activity last week but is unsure what his next step is because he has not gone through this before.

Johnson has 22 catches for 348 yards and two touchdowns. Bush has 45 carries for 161 yards and one touchdown along with 20 catches for 142 yards. Bell has 48 carries for 152 yards and a touchdown and nine receptions for 73 yards.

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