The Lions were without both of their starting cornerbacks on Sunday in San Francisco, which forced Drayton Florence into the starting lineup. The good news is that the Lions’ starters, Chris Houston and Bill Bentley, are back at practice today. The bad news is that Florence got hurt against the 49ers.
Detroit announced today that Florence has been placed on injured reserve, and the Lions are taking advantage of the new rule that allows them to designate Florence for return. That means he’ll be eligible to return to practice after Week Eight, and to play starting in Week Ten.
Florence suffered a broken arm against the 49ers and needed surgery to put the bone back in place, but he finished the game after the injury. That earned him the praise of Lions coach Jim Schwartz.
“I’ve got a lot of respect for that guy,” Schwartz said. “He’s played a lot of football in the NFL, came in here and learned the system very quickly and got thrown into the fire very quickly. I thought he acquitted himself very well. And the team needed him. We were so short on corners that he really couldn’t come out of the game, and he went and soldiered through. We didn’t know it was broke until afterwards because, mainly, he just didn’t tell anybody. He didn’t let anybody really get a feel for it. But he had surgery.”
While he’s on injured reserve, Florence won’t count against the Lions’ 53-man roster. His space is being taken by running back Mikel Leshoure, who has been activated from the reserve/suspended list after missing the first two games while serving a suspension for his two offseason marijuana possession arrests.