The Lions returned from the bye Monday, and got right back to business, both on the field and in negotiations.
The team announced Wednesday they signed kicker Matt Prater to a contract extension.
"Matt is among the best kickers in the National Football League and has proven that time and time again since coming to Detroit in 2014," general manager Bob Quinn said in a release. "This extension solidifies our kicking game through 2020. I would like to thank Matt and his representatives for their work on getting this contract extension completed."
For Prater, extending his time in Detroit was an easy decision.
"I'm all about staying in Detroit," he said, "and hopefully retiring here."
In other special teams news, punter Sam Martin practiced again this week.
Martin first returned to practice the Tuesday before the bye week, so his continued participation, coupled with the release of punter Jeff Locke, are good signs Martin will be ready to play after spending the first seven weeks of the season on the Non-Football Injury list.
SUNDAY NIGHT VS. THE STEELERS
Who's ready for Sunday Night Football in Detroit?
The Lions' return to game action will be on the National stage. Under head coach Jim Caldwell, the Lions are 3-0 after the bye. They'll need more of that post-bye magic against this week's formidable opponent - The Pittsburgh Steelers.
The Steelers are coming to town following two impressive performances against the Chiefs and Bengals in which their star players lived up to their billing. Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown and running back Le'Veon Bell just might be the best wide receiver-running back duo in the league, at least according to Bell anyways.
"Personally, I don't think there's a better duo]," Bell [said in a conference-call interview Wednesday morning. "I think that AB outside, he's the best receiver in the world. There aren't too many guys who do the things that he does.
"He goes deep. He runs every route in the route tree. He's like a running back, once he gets the ball in his hands. He's special with it. He does a lot of things that I feel like I would do in the open field. You don't see too many receivers who have that ability."
For Mike O'Hara's full scouting report on the Steelers, click here.
WHICH WIDE RECEIVERS WILL WE SEE?
Wide receiver Golden Tate suffered what appeared to be a fairly serious shoulder injury Week 6 in New Orleans.
So imagine everyone's surprise when Wednesday's open practice rolled around, and Tate was out there catching passes.
"I feel okay," Tate said in the locker room Thursday. "Just taking it day by day, trying to get better and trying to get back on the field as fast as possible. Just trying to trust in the process and do whatever I can to get back on the field."
Tate was a limited participant all week, and was listed as questionable on the injury report. Rookie wide receiver Kenny Golladay, however, has already been ruled out for Sunday's contest.
With Tate questionable and Golladay out, the rest of the receivers will have to step up. The Lions also signed wide receiver Jace Billingsley to the active roster from the practice squad this week, so he will be available if needed.
OTHER NOTEWORTHY ITEMS:
- Watch guard T.J. Lang sit down with cornerback Darius Slay for the seventh episode of Talkin' With T.J.
- You asked. Now watch wide receiver Marvin Jones Jr. answer your fan-submitted questions in this week's #AskALion episode.
- Catch up on all the news from Teryl Austin's and Jim Bob Cooter's Thursday press conferences.
- How will the Lions perform coming off the bye? Tim Twentyman covers that question and more in his latest 10 Questions column.