NOTEBOOK: Decker questionable for Lions-Colts

Left tackle Taylor Decker (shoulder) is the biggest concern on the injury front for the Lions heading into the weekend. Decker was a limited participant Thursday, but sat out of practice Friday and is officially listed as questionable to play Sunday vs. Indianapolis.

Decker's been a rock at left tackle this year for the Lions. He's the 13th highest graded overall tackle by Pro Football Focus and still hasn't allowed a sack on the season. If he can't go, we could see Tyrell Crosby swing over to the left side. Detroit's got options then at right tackle with Halapoulivaati Vaitai or Matt Nelson, and Joe Dahl coming back into the starting lineup at guard.

Overall, however, the Lions are pretty healthy heading into Week 8, with no one listed as out for Sunday on Friday's injury report.

Cornerback Desmond Trufant returned to practice Thursday for the first time in nearly a month, and followed that up by practicing Friday as well, though his availability for Sunday's game against the Indianapolis Colts on Sunday remains in question.

View photos from Detroit Lions practice on Thursday, Oct. 29, 2020.

Trufant practiced on a limited basis Thursday and Friday due to the hamstring injury he aggravated in Detroit's Week 4 loss to the New Orleans Saints. He's been dealing with the hamstring injury since Week 1, and it's limited him to just 92 snaps this season.

Amani Oruwariye and Jeff Okudah have settled into their starting roles at cornerback with Trufant out, and it's unclear what a Trufant return to the lineup might mean for the cornerback rotation. Nickel corner Justin Coleman (hamstring) was at practice for a second straight week and could potentially return off IR this weekend.

"He's getting better every week," Lions head coach Matt Patricia said of Coleman this week.

Trufant is officially listed as questionable, as is cornerback Darryl Roberts (groin/hip). Running back Adrian Peterson has been dealing with an abdomen injury, but it won't keep him from playing Sunday. 

Detroit has won their last two contests, and a win against the Colts will propel them over the .500 mark for the first time this season. The Lions are hoping to have most hands on deck for a pivotal matchup Sunday at Ford Field.

COMING OFF THE BYE

The Lions used their Week 5 bye to rest up, get a good look at what they were doing well the first month of the season and what needed to be adjusted. Detroit's coaches simplified some things schematically and played around with some personnel matchups. It led to the Lions playing much better football following the bye the last two weeks in wins over Jacksonville and Atlanta.

The Colts are coming off their bye last week and no-doubt did the same kind of self-evaluation the Lions did. They'll likely have some tweaks the Lions haven't seen on film.

"Guys that are coming off the bye week have obviously had a chance to go back and see the different things they're doing right now, whether there's different areas they're going to change, improve or throw, like you said, a few new wrinkles in there," Patricia said.

"That's always one part of the challenge of seeing the team off the bye week, plus obviously it's a team that's rested and going to be able to come in and play fast and have some fresh legs underneath them."

Patricia also pointed out the Colts had an extra week to prepare, scout and game plan for Detroit specifically. 

Detroit played arguably their most complete game of the year Week 6 in Jacksonville coming off their Week 5 bye with the extra time to prepare for the Jags. The Lions have averaged 3.7 more points per game and allowed 12.8 fewer points per game since their bye.

EXTRA POINTS

  • Since 1990, teams that have started the season 4-3 have made the playoffs 49.2 percent of the time, according to NFL Media Research. That percentage dips to 18.2 percent for teams that start the year 3-4.
  • Halloween is on Saturday. What was Patricia's go-to costume growing up? "I'm pretty sure I probably had a Darth Vader costume that I probably wore for 10 years," he said. "So yeah, it's probably still at my parents' house."
  • Entering Week 8, home teams have a .510 win percentage on the year (53-51-1). If the trend continues, it would be the second lowest home win percentage in a season since the 1970 merger (1972, .508).

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