Darius Slay among four Lions' starters questionable vs. Patriots

Justin Rogers
The Detroit News
Lions cornerback Darius Slay was back on the field Friday.

Allen Park — After not practicing Wednesday or Thursday, Detroit Lions All-Pro cornerback Darius Slay returned to the field Friday, in a limited capacity. Subsequently, he is listed as questionable for Sunday's game against the New England Patriots. 

Slay left last Sunday's loss against the San Francisco 49ers with a concussion, suffered during a helmet-to-helmet collision with 49ers fullback Kyle Juszczyk. The star corner was back Friday, wearing a no-contact red jersey, opening up the possibility he could play this Sunday against the New England Patriots. 

Slay also spoke to reporters in the locker room after Friday's practice, another sign he's close to exiting the return to play protocol. He had little to say about the hit, and whether he was knocked unconscious on the play. He did say he hasn't re-watched it. 

Slay noted it's the first documented concussion he's suffered playing football. He had been removed from the game and tested for one the week before, in the team's loss to the Jets. He acknowledged it can be worrying. 

"I mean, who wouldn't (be worried)?" he said. "It's a contact sport, like I said. I signed up for it. I know the risks of it. I'm just trying to take care of myself." 

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In addition to Slay, the Lions listed five other players as questionable for Sunday's game. The game statuses for defensive end Ezekiel Ansah (shoulder), linebacker Eli Harold (hip), wide receiver Marivn Jones (ankle), guard T.J. Lang (back) and tight end Michael Roberts (knee) are all uncertain.

Ansah and Lang were sidelined against the 49ers and were limited in practice all this week. Harold suffered his injury during Thursday's practice, while Jones and Roberts were nicked up on Friday. 

The only player the Lions ruled out against the Patriots is offensive tackle Andrew Donnel. 

Starting left tackle Taylor Decker missed Friday's practice, but it wasn't injury related. He's expected to play Sunday. 

For the Patriots, safety Patrick Chung and defensive lineman Trey Flowers are doubtful. The two starters are both recovering from concussions. 

Offensive tackle Marcus Cannon, defensive backs Keion Crossen, Nate Ebner and Eric Rowe are all questionable. So is Josh Gordon (hamstring), the ultra-talented wide receiver acquired in a trade this week from the Cleveland Browns. 

Tight end Rob Gronkowski, who tweaked his ankle Thursday, was a full participant Friday and not listed on the team's final injury report. 


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