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The outlook for LaAdrian Waddle's left knee injury is grim, according to Lions coach Jim Caldwell, and he'll most likely be on season-ending injured reserve by Tuesday.

A cart took Waddle off the field in the third quarter of Sunday's win over the Vikings after Minnesota defensive end Everson Griffen fell into the right tackle's knee. Waddle was writhing in pain on the ground before two trainers helped him onto the cart, and the immediate fear was the injury would end his season.

"It doesn't look good for him," Caldwell said during his weekly news conference Monday. "We'll continue to look at him, do a little evaluation and things of that nature. We'll have a final word here shortly, the next day or so."

Undrafted rookie Cornelius Lucas played the rest of the game in Waddle's place Sunday, and if Waddle cannot return this season, the Lions would likely insert Lucas into the starting lineup. However, when Waddle missed four games earlier this year — three for a calf injury, one for a concussion — veteran Garrett Reynolds started at right tackle and split time with Lucas, who is better at left tackle than right.

Waddle has had an injury-plagued second season after an impressive rookie year in which he started eight games at right tackle after going undrafted out of Texas Tech. In addition to the calf injury he suffered in Week 1, he's had two concussions and also suffered a knee injury in Week 10 against the Dolphins.

jkatzenstein@detroitnews.com

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