INDIANAPOLIS –The Detroit Lions were already thin at defensive end coming into Sunday's preseason opener against the Colts. They leave Indy even thinner.
Starter Kerry Hyder Jr., who led the Lions' defense last year with eight sacks, was injured on the second defensive series of the game and had to be carted off the field.
After the game, head coach Jim Caldwell described it as a "significant" Achilles tendon injury.
"The doctors will take a look at it further and kind of see, but it doesn't look good," Caldwell said.
The injury occurred as Hyder tried to get the edge on a 2nd and 8 pass by Colts quarterback Scott Tolzien intended for T.Y. Hilton. Hyder hit the turf and immediately grabbed at the back of his lower left leg.
The Lions were already without starter Ziggy Ansah (PUP) and two key reserves in Cornelius Washington and Armonty Bryant. Bryant is also suspended the first four games of the regular season.
As of Sunday afternoon, the only edge rushers on the roster that are healthy right now are second-year player Anthony Zettel and rookies Alex Barrett, Pat O'Connor and Jeremiah Valoaga. Veteran linebacker/defensive end Brandon Copeland left the game with a shoulder injury and didn't return.
Hyder has scratched and clawed his way from the practice squad to being a starter over the last two seasons, and is one of the most liked players in the locker room.
"It makes you literally sick to your stomach, like you're going to throw up," Zettel said of watching Hyder get carted off. "Because you see the guy out-work everybody and he's an awesome teammate, better person, awesome father and brother. He's everything and to see a guy like that go down literally makes you sick to your stomach."
PREGAME FIELD WORK
There was an issue with the paint on two "Play Football" logos at the 25-yard line on each end of Lucas Oil Field.
Crews were working to remove some of the paint before the game, and had the areas coned off when some of the players were warming up pregame.
Lions team president Rod Wood, general manager Bob Quinn, head coach Jim Caldwell and Colts officials closely inspected the work.
"Paint was thicker than desired and needed touching up," the Colts said in an official statement. "Nothing major."
Not taking part in Sunday's preseason opener were: DE Ziggy Ansah (PUP), T Taylor Decker (PUP), T Corey Robinson (PUP), P Sam Martin (NFI), G T.J. Lang, TE Eric Ebron, RB Theo Riddick, DT Haloti Ngata, CB Darius Slay, T Cyrus Kouandjo, S Don Carey, S Tavon Wilson, TE Tim Wright, T Cornelius Lucas, DE Armonty Bryant, DE Cornelius Washington, RB Mike James, DT Jordan Hill, LB Nick Bellore and WR Dez Stewart.
View in-game photos from the Detroit Lions' preseason opener against the Indianapolis Colts.