Levy: 'I expect to be ready to roll Week 1'

Posted Aug 16, 2016

Returning to practice Tuesday afternoon was a step in the right direction for linebacker DeAndre Levy.

The Detroit Lions got a key piece to their defense back on the practice field in Allen Park Tuesday.

The team removed linebacker DeAndre Levy from the active/non-football injury list in the morning, and he took part in his first training camp practice of the year later in the afternoon. Levy had been on that list and a non-participant in practice since training camp opened July 28.

His teammates even had a little fun with him seeing him in shoulder pads and a helmet for the first time in a couple months.

“I’m a new guy,” Levy said. “I’m a new face out there right now.”

He drew the line at carrying anyone’s helmet or shoulder pads off the field though, a job usually reserved for rookies. 

Levy only took part in individual drills, which is par for the course with players returning from injury, but he said it was a good next step in the process of getting back to 100 percent, and there was no rust involved.

“It feels good,” he said of being back. “I’ve been headed in the right direction since I got hurt. I feel the same.”

Levy played just 17 snaps last year due to a core muscle injury. He took part in OTAs and minicamp in the spring and summer, but has been out the last few weeks with an undisclosed injury.

“I expect to be ready to roll Week 1,” he said.

Levy would even like to get some live reps in the preseason, but whether that happens or not is still up in the air.

“Usually those guys that are really intrinsically motivated, you have that problem all the time,” Caldwell said when asked about sometimes having to reel a player in during the preseason to make sure they’re ready and healthy Week 1.

“It’s a good problem to have.”

The Lions play their second preseason game Thursday against the Cincinnati Bengals at Ford Field, but it doesn't seem likely Levy will be in the lineup.

Getting him back on the practice field, even in limited fashion Tuesday, is a huge positive for the Lions' defense. A true three-down linebacker, he tied for second in the NFL with six interceptions in 2013, and led the Lions with 151 tackles – and the NFL in solo tackles with 117 – in 2014.

“The guys that have played as much football as he has, oftentimes they catch on rather quickly,” Caldwell said. “He never really gets away from it, to be honest with you. He keeps his head into it all the time.”