Lions interim head coach Darrell Bevell said Friday that rookie running back D’Andre Swift remains out of practice with an illness he began feeling symptoms of Thursday before being sent home from the practice facility.
The illness is not COVID-19, and is also not related to the concussion he suffered two weeks ago. Swift is listed as questionable for Sunday's game in Chicago. Bevell said that if Swift plays against the Bears, it would likely be in a smaller role because he hasn't had any practice time this week.
"He missed a bunch of time in training camp so we're just kind of building him up a giving him a little bit more and a little bit more," Bevell said. "Obviously, it would go back to just a smaller package for him."
Swift's been in and out of meetings this week, but coaches have been in communication with him.
"We just have to see as far as the game plan specific stuff, it would be very specific so he can go out there and play fast like I talk about," Bevell said.
The last time we saw Swift on the field was Detroit's Week 10 win over Washington. It was Swift's first start of the season, and he racked up 149 combined scrimmage yards and a touchdown in Detroit's 30-27 win.
Concussion symptoms developed in days following that game, and Swift has missed Detroit's last two contests, both losses, in Carolina and home to Houston on Thanksgiving.
"I think it's just been a focus every day on his health and trying to get him right," Bevell said.
This is truly a day-to-day with Swift in regards to Sunday. We'll see if he can fight off the illness enough in time to play in Chicago.
HUNTER BRYANT OFF IR
Undrafted rookie tight end Hunter Bryant was a nice story early in training camp as it seemed like he was making a huge catch deep down the field after gaining separation from a defender almost daily.
But Bryant suffered a hamstring injury the second week of camp that wiped out the rest of his training camp. Still, he made a good enough impression early on that he made the Lions' 53-man roster out of camp. After finally recovering from the hamstring injury, Bryant suffered a concussion that landed him on IR in mid-October. He was activated form IR this week, and we'll see if the Lions work him into the mix these final five games for his first action of the season.
"We really liked what we saw out of him in training camp, so we were able to get him to start back to practice," Bevell said. "He's doing a nice job, but he's still in his rookie year and still learning a lot. Giving him an opportunity to get out on the field, see what he can do, see what we have and we'll just kind of go from there."
View photos from Detroit Lions practice on Thursday Dec. 3, 2020.
Bevell will be a head coach for the first time Sunday in Chicago, and that means he needs to have a pulse on everything that's going on. All the communication with coaches, in-game challenges and overall game management all falls on Bevell.
He said he's excited for the opportunity and confident he'll have all the new logistics of his gameday operations down.
"We have to have these meetings planned to be sure that we're on that. I have been involved – we've had coordinator meetings with the head coach and the same game management team that we've had," he said.
"I have great support staff (and) in these next two days, we'll move our focus to actual gameday, make sure our communication is very clear, what's going to happen where I am on which lines, so that the guys that need to get to me, get to me, then the decisions I need to make in game-management situations, I think that's going to be the most important part, so that we nail those. I feel really confident about it."
- The Lions signed free agent center Evan Brown to the practice squad on Friday and released G Beau Benzschawel from the practice squad.
- Mitchell Trubisky will start at quarterback for the Bears Sunday. Trubisky has won four straight starts vs. the Lions since 2018. Over that stretch he's completed 69.3 percent of his passes with 14 touchdowns (most by any player vs. Lions since 2017), one interception and a 124.4 passer rating. He threw three fourth-quarter touchdowns in the come-from-behind win over Detroit Week 1.