The Detroit Lions gained two players from injury back at practice on Friday, and narrowly avoided a potentially devastating blow as well.
Eric Ebron and Rick Wagner were both cleared to return, though Ebron went through individual drills before stopping for the day. Meanwhile, Wagner didn’t look any worse for wear.
Head coach Jim Caldwell anticipates Ebron to be back to full capacity shortly, and believes he’s on track to be ready for the start of the season.
“He’ll probably be back next week for us, rolling along,” Caldwell said. “He’s a weapon. I think when you look at a guy who’s caught around 60 balls last year, every year he’s almost doubled his output. We don’t anticipate he’s going to double his output this year — there’s not going to be 120 balls going to him in that respect — but nevertheless, I think he’s going to be able to do a little bit more damage.
“I think that like most other guys that have been in the system, he’s going to have a little bit better feel for all of the things that we do. He’s gone through, and this will be a couple years now, and I think you’ll see some of that explosiveness come out. He’s a capable guy, you just have to keep him healthy.”
Additionally, the Lions survived a scare. Quarterback Matthew Stafford briefly left the field limping after knocking knees with Ameer Abdullah and was replaced by Jake Rudock. Stafford was attended to and eventually was able to return.
“I was on the other field, so I didn’t see it,” Caldwell reported afterwards. “I only heard about it, but I didn’t see it. If I didn’t hear any ‘oohs’ and ‘ahhs’ from the crowd, so I didn’t worry too much about it. But he and Ameer I guess kind of clicked knees, from what I understand, but he’s fine.”
Stafford finished 8 of 12 in passing drills for the day.