Allen Park — In 2015, the last season he was healthy, Detroit Lions defensive end Ziggy Ansah averaged 41 snaps, and played as many as 58.
After returning to practice this week, after a nearly three-month layoff, it’s probably unreasonable to think Ansah will jump right back into a full workload for Sunday’s season opener against the Arizona Cardinals.
Lions coach Jim Caldwell said a determination on Ansah’s playing time wouldn’t be made until after a full week of practice, but acknowledged the possibility of the former Pro Bowl edge rusher being on a pitch count.
“There’s no question about it,” Caldwell said. “With everybody, we kind of look at it and determine how we can best utilize what they’re able to give us. We determine that as we get closer to the ball game. Right now, to say it’s a possibility, sure it is. Have we determined that as of yet? No, we have not.”
Whether Ansah plays 20 snaps or 40, Arizona coach Bruce Arians expects Ansah to be at his best.
“You know how good he is, he’s got a resume already,” Arians said. “It’s not like a rookie that wasn’t out there. You can study a lot of film on him and you better have your chinstrap on real tight.”
The Lions released the team's first injury report of the year, and we finally know Ansah has been dealing with a knee injury.
The former Pro Bowler was one of four players listed as limited on Wednesday. Along with Ansah, wide receiver Kenny Golladay (ankle), tackle Corey Robinson (foot) and running back Zach Zenner (back) weren't able to fully participate in the practice.