Lions scrap Wednesday practice in favor of walk-through

Justin Rogers
The Detroit News
Matt Patricia

Allen Park -- For the second time this season, the Detroit Lions are opting to hold a walk-through instead of a practice on a Wednesday. 

The lighter session, sans pads and helmets, focuses more on the mental aspects of the game compared to physical components. 

The Lions went with a walk-through the second week of the season, following a Monday night contest and prior to a West Coast trip to play the 49ers. Coach Matt Patricia explained that was normal procedure following a Monday night game.

At the time, he also suggested the Lions were likely do something similar the week of Thanksgiving. 

This decision to go with a walk-through this week, especially after hammering home the need for a renewed focus on fundamentals following three consecutive double-digit losses, is more curious.

But Patricia, who is navigating his way through his first season as a head coach, said he felt the change was necessary after back-to-back road games and a looming battle with a physical Carolina Panthers team. 

More: Lions film review: Five observations vs. Bears

More: Detroit News NFL picks: Week 11

"Good thing is, I kind of get to kind change those things when I want to, when I feel it's necessary for us as a team, or whenever a case might come up where we need to change the look of whatever we're doing that day," Patricia said. "Having three games in 12 days, whatever it is, we're probably going to have some walk-through type practices in there to conserve ourselves physically here, especially with a Carolina group that's obviously a really physical football team coming in here, and (our team) coming off a stretch where we've been on the road playing playing some physical games, just the right thing to do for today."

Although the team's practice times have been consistent since getting beyond a pair of early-season primetime games, Patricia said he doesn't have a routine set it stone, noting sometimes the team wears full pads on Wednesdays and other weeks on Thursday. 

"Good thing, it's always fluid, so I can change it whenever necessary," he said. 

The Lions are dealing with a number of injuries coming into the practice week. Cornerback Darius Slay (knee), guard T.J. Lang (neck), linebacker Eli Harold (shoulder) and tight end Luke Willson (shoulder) all missed last Sunday's game against Chicago due to injury, while wide receiver Marvin Jones (knee) and tight end Michael Roberts (shoulder) were unable to finish the finish due to injury. 

The Lions were required to release a practice report Wednesday afternoon with estimated designations for the team's injured players. 

Had the Lions practiced, Jones, Roberts and defensive tackle A'Shawn Robinson (ankle) would have have participated. Defensive end Ziggy Ansah (shoulder), defensive tackle Damon Harrison (shoulder) and Slay headlined a group that would have been limited.

Twitter: @justin_rogers