Did Jeff Backus break his thumb?

Detroit Lions left tackle Jeff Backus hasn't practiced since injuring his right thumb Saturday, and on Monday he was spotted in the locker room with a hard cast on the hand. Reasonable people could assume that Backus' thumb is broken, as did Chris McCosky of the Detroit News, but the Lions have not confirmed it.

Backus hasn't missed a regular-season game since entering the NFL in 2001, a span of 176 consecutive games, and it doesn't appear the Lions have any long-term concerns about this injury. Last summer, Backus missed most of training camp because of a partially torn pectoral muscle but returned in time to play the entire regular season.

For those interested, rookie Riley Reiff is not among those who are filling in for Backus on the left side. Corey Hilliard and Jason Fox are handling those duties, according to McCosky, while Reiff works at right tackle with the second and third teams.