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Minneapolis — DeAndre Levy still doesn’t know when he’ll return from a hip injury to help the Lions defense, but after watching another loss from the sidelines Sunday, he’s itching to play.

“Obviously, after a loss like this, you want to be out there especially more, but I’m doing everything I could possibly do to get healthy,” he said after the Lions’ 26-16 loss to the Vikings at TCF Bank Stadium.

The Lions gave up 483 yards in a Week 1 loss to the Chargers, including 388 through the air. On Sunday, the Lions allowed 350 yards, including 199 on the ground.

Having Levy on the field would make it easier for the Lions defense to perform, especially since he’s their best linebacker and has the sideline-to-sideline speed to cover both running backs and tight ends in the pass game, but coach Jim Caldwell again declined to make Levy’s absence an excuse.

“What our defense missed is consistent play,” Caldwell said. “That’s a weakness, and right now we’re not playing consistent.”

Caldwell said he’s “not certain” when Levy would be back on the field, and even though he wants to be back as soon as possible, Levy said it’s hard to say if there’s a chance he’ll be ready for Week 3.

“I think I’m getting closer, though,” he said.

Levy said he suffered the injury in the Lions’ first padded practice after the second exhibition game. He missed the final two exhibitions and hasn’t practiced in nearly a month.

Asked about a report citing anonymous reports that he’s suffering from a parasite contracted in Chile, Levy said he’s doesn’t know where that idea came from.

Regardless of what exactly is ailing Levy — it’s a hip muscle strain, according to his agent Joe Panos — the Lions desperately need him back on a defensive unit that has hardly resembled last year’s second-ranked group.

“We haven’t executed these first two games,” he said. “We’ve had stretches here and there where we have, but we haven’t been playing well enough. There’s been a lot of breakdowns.”

jkatzenstein@detroitnews.com

twitter.com/jkatzenstein

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