DeVries left the practice field on a cart Monday with a ruptured Achilles tendon that will require season-ending surgery.
He started 29 games the past three seasons for the Lions and has played in 120 games for them since they drafted him out of Iowa in 1999.
DeVries starred for the late Ed Thomas at Aplington-Parkersburg High School in Iowa. Thomas was gunned down by a former player in June.
The Lions acted quickly to replace DeVries, signing veteran defensive lineman Shaun Smith to a $1 million, one-year deal.
Smith started 19 games in two seasons with the Cleveland Browns, who suddenly cut him Saturday. Browns coach Eric Mangini offered few details about his decision to cut Smith, who spoke freely and was involved in a weight-room fight with quarterback Brady Quinn.
Smith signed a four-year deal worth $8.6 million in 2007 after playing two seasons with the Cincinnati Bengals.
The Lions said they held receiver Calvin Johnson out of practice for precautionary reasons. Johnson had a cast on his right hand to protect a jammed thumb. Coach Jim Schwartz said X-rays showed Johnson did not have a significant injury, but he wouldn't say if Johnson would miss Saturday's preseason opener at home against the Atlanta Falcons.
Rookie safety Louis Delmas, a second-round pick, returned to the field after missing several practices with a sore knee.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.