Debate about the best way to handle the exhibition season has increased along with the number of teams that choose to keep key players out of preseason games altogether.
The argument in favor of keeping starters on the bench got some support in Detroit on Friday night. Lions linebacker Jarrad Davis and center Frank Ragnow both suffered leg injuries that left them unable to walk on their own and they required carts to take them to the locker room.
Both players will undergo further testing to determine the severity of the injuries, but neither looked good and it led to questions for head coach Matt Patricia about having those players in the game after the Lions rested many of their top players through the first two weeks of the preseason.
“I think we can argue either side of the coin on all this,” Patricia said, via the Detroit Free Press. “Hindsight is 20-20. So for us, we try to stick to the plan. We’re looking at reps, we’re looking at numbers, we’re looking at possibilities of when we can get guys out there, when we think they’ve had enough during the course of the week to take a look at it. Guys can get injured during practice, guys can get injured during the game. I mean, it’s football, to some aspects of it. Injuries are part of the game and that’s something that we all have to deal with.”
The Lions lost wide receiver Jermaine Kearse for the year when he broke his leg in the first preseason game. They’ll be hoping for better news on Davis and Ragnow.