ALLEN PARK, Mich. -- The Detroit Lions were prepared in case this situation happened. And with their tight end corps in disarray, they have brought in another player just a few hours before leaving for London.
Davis, who was a fifth-round pick of the Bears in 2008 out of Michigan State, has played in 95 games between Chicago and Seattle, making 50 catches for 561 yards and 12 touchdowns.
This was the type of situation Detroit had been preparing for with workouts for weeks, including bringing Davis in Thursday for a tryout after Eric Ebron injured his hamstring.
“You have your short list ready,” Lions team president Tom Lewand told ESPN.com. “So the fact that we’re going (to London) a little bit later (in the year) will help us. We’ve already got the book built on a number of different positions, including physicals and workout information and all that kind of stuff.”
Tight end happens to be Detroit’s biggest area of concern after the Saints game. The Lions went into the game down Ebron (hamstring) and Joseph Fauria (ankle) and with only two healthy tight ends in Brandon Pettigrew and Jordan Thompson.
Pettigrew then was injured in the game but finished, so the Lions were down to one healthy tight end, Thompson, who has played one career game.
“I’m always concerned about numbers, particularly in places where we can get thin there,” Lions coach Jim Caldwell said. “So that’s a concern. But yeah, (Pettigrew) was hobbling, but the effort he put forth to finish that game out was quite admirable.
“But those are the type of guys that we have. They are tough and get after it and find a way.”
Lewand said the team will have people at their facility in Allen Park, Michigan, on Monday and Tuesday to work players out if necessary and, in a worst-case scenario, watching a player on video could be an option before potentially signing him and flying him over to London.
Caldwell said Monday that general manager Martin Mayhew has also been asking questions about passports to players the team works out on Tuesdays, just in case they would need them for this trip.
“It’d be quite a task if we didn’t have the Tuesdays like we have,” Caldwell said. “Generally, Martin has done a tremendous job, for reasons like this, of staying ahead of the curve with anything that you ask him to.
“We have a pool that we work with that we know who the next guy in line is at a number of different spots, wherever it might be. You really don’t know until you come out of a ballgame.”
Coming out of Sunday, tight end was that area.
Couplin had been primarily a special-teams player the past few weeks, and he has made two tackles in seven games.