Chris Houston's injury a growing concern for Lions

Posted May 5, 2014

How bad Chris Houston’s injury is could dictate how high the Lions feel they need to draft a cornerback.

Lions general manager Martin Mayhew told reporters at the NFL Scouting Combine in February he had confidence veteran cornerback Chris Houston would bounce back from a sub-par season in 2013.

Chris HoustonCB Chris Houston (Photo: Gavin Smith)

Fast forward a couple months and it seems Mayhew doesn’t have the same amount of confidence he once did. Part of that is attributed to an injury (believed to be a toe) that Houston is continuing to deal with. It cost him participation in the first voluntary minicamp for the Lions last month.

“Chris has a medical issue dealing back to last year,” Mayhew said. “He dealt with it during the season last year. He’s still dealing with it, trying to find the right treatment plan for him right now.”

Mayhew said the team isn’t ruling out the possibility Houston has surgery at some point to fix the issue.

“I wouldn’t rule that out, but I don’t really know right now,” he said.

The uncertainty surrounding Houston was first brought up by head coach Jim Caldwell during the minicamp, when he couldn't say with any certainty Houston would bounce back.

Houston’s availability for training camp, and potentially the season, could certainly have an impact in this week’s draft. They were already in a position to add to the secondary this week, but maybe that need is greater than first believed.

How bad Houston’s injury is could dictate how high the Lions feel they need to draft a corner.

“As far as corners, I think I said before, the most important thing to me is competitiveness,” Mayhew said. “You’ve got to have that guy that doesn’t want anybody catching any balls on him ever in practice, in walk-through, whatever. We’re looking for a guy that has that kind of mentality. A lot of them have different physical attributes, but the mentality is the most important thing at corner I think.”

As far as Houston goes, Mayhew said the longer the issue persists the more concern he has about that prediction back in February.

Something happened back in August, November that we’re still dealing with, you know, so there’s a concern there,” Mayhew said. “But I guess we’ll see what happens.”