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Lions rookie Travis Swanson drew solid reviews for his first start at center in Sunday's loss to the Packers, playing in place of suspended veteran Dominic Raiola.

And with right guard Larry Warford suffering a knee injury Sunday, there's a good chance Swanson will shift to that position for next Sunday's playoff game in Dallas.

According to Pro Football Focus, Swanson had his best game of the season Sunday, and he said he felt comfortable playing his natural position. He played 50 games at center for Arkansas, but made three starts at right guard earlier this year when Warford was dealing with an injury.

On Sunday, Swanson allowed two quarterback hurries, according to PFF, but had a positive run blocking grade as the Lions ran 15 times for 78 yards in the first half.

"I thought it went good given the situation," Swanson said. "I've never been the kind of guy that's just going to say I did good or I did bad without looking at the film."

Swanson, though, didn't make any noticeable errors, which is always a positive sign for an offensive lineman.

"I don't think anyone noticed any issues with our center," coach Jim Caldwell said.

Offensive coordinator Joe Lombardi said it'd be hard to imagine Swanson doing anything to win the starting job from Raiola, so the 14-year veteran should slot back into the lineup this week.

Raiola, meanwhile, couldn't attend the game Sunday or be at team headquarters last week, and left guard Rob Sims said he knew Raiola was hurting watching the game.

"He wasn't doing too well," said Sims, who talked to Raiola before the game. "I'll keep what he said in house, but, of course, he wanted to be here for this."

The Lions should have an update Monday on Warford, but because he needed a cart to take him to the locker room, the outlook isn't good. Swanson, a third-round pick, could make another start at guard.

"If he's down, then I'll be ready," Swanson said.

jkatzenstein@detroitnews.com

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