LIONS INSIDER

Calvin Johnson inactive in Oakland

Posted Aug 15, 2014

For the second straight week the Detroit Lions will be without their best offensive weapon in the preseason.

For the second straight week the Detroit Lions will be without their best offensive weapon in the preseason.

Calvin JohnsonWR Calvin Johnson (Photo: AP Images)

All-Pro receiver Calvin Johnson is inactive for tonight’s game in Oakland, as head coach Jim Caldwell continues to be cautious with his star receiver.

Johnson is coming off knee and finger surgeries this offseason and has yet to play the first two weeks of the preseason.

It was likely an easy decision for Caldwell to hold Johnson out this week as Oakland has a notoriously awful turf that doubles as a baseball field for the Oakland A’s. There's no reason to risk injury when games don’t count in August.

Kris Durham will start in his place.

Defensive end Ziggy Ansah is also inactive. Caldwell announced earlier this week that he wouldn’t play after he was removed from the PUP list. Ansah had offseason shoulder surgery and missed all spring and the first two weeks of training camp.

The Lions will look to get him some preseason reps as soon as they can, however, possibly as soon as next week at home vs. Jacksonville.

“He’s out there doing everything but the heavy contact stuff right now, so it won’t be long,” Caldwell said of Ansah.

“He’s progressing, (and he’s a) big, strong man. He’s going to help us. He’s either going to collapse the pocket with his size and strength or he’ll run around the offensive player and use his length to be an obstruction to the passer, and he’ll get some sacks for us, as well.  He’s a force.”

George Johnson will start in place of Ansah and Devin Taylor is getting the start instead of Jason Jones.

It should also be noted that CJ Mosley will start at defensive tackle alongside Ndamukong Suh, replacing Nick Fairley.

Fairley has seen his reps decline in practice this week after an uninspired first two weeks of training camp.

Rounding out the list of inactive players is receiver TJ Jones, who remains on PUP.