ALLEN PARK, Mich. -- DeAndre Levy put a helmet on Tuesday for the first time this preseason. He stepped onto the field ready to practice. He took a few reps during individual drills, including the first rep with the linebackers.
Then, during the rest of practice, Levy sat.
The Detroit Lions are clearly not going to push their star linebacker back too soon from his undisclosed injury. He told ESPN on Monday and then reiterated today that he would like to have some live reps in the preseason, but his main focus is getting back for the season opener on Sept. 11 in Indianapolis.
The eighth-year veteran, who had 151 tackles in 2014, joked that he’s “a new face out there now,” since he hasn’t participated in a padded practice in a year, but it isn’t like he’s carrying helmets off the field like most rookies.
And even though he’s been gone for a while, nothing felt much different to him. And at least watching him run and cut, he looked to be the same player he was before he got hurt. Of course, it’ll be difficult to really know until he goes through a full practice -- and probably a live game.
But Monday was progress.
“I just did individuals,” Levy said. “So there wasn’t too much rust.”
With Levy back, here are some more observations from one of the Lions’ final open-to-the-media practices of the preseason.
1. Quinshad Davis continues to stand out: The undrafted receiver from North Carolina is consistently running with the second unit and continues to make big plays in practice situations. He had a nifty catch on the run on a throw from Dan Orlovsky in the end zone. The ball was a little low, but Davis, in stride, extended his arms down to make the catch and keep going while in traffic. He also showed his hands against air when he had two deep balls thrown at him 30 yards down field. He caught the first one. Then, while holding the ball, he snagged the second with one hand. He told me Tuesday he wants to be most known for his hands, and they have been reliable for him throughout his football career. There is a ways to go, but those hands, along with his 6-foot-3, 218-pound frame make Davis a firm candidate for a roster spot. While it isn’t entirely clear how Bob Quinn will shape his roster in his first season as Lions GM, Davis is at least giving him a lot to think about over the next few weeks.
2. Graham Glasgow's anomaly: The center believes “things have been going better” as camp has moved along. After starting with the third team, the team’s third-round pick has been working consistently with the No. 2 offensive line over the past two weeks. Glasgow has shown good chemistry with fellow rookie Joe Dahl on the interior of the line, and he’s picked up intricacies of playing on the offensive line at the NFL level. That said, there are still issues. Glasgow had a bad snap Tuesday to Dan Orlovsky, sending Orlovsky scrambling back for the ball and then taking a knee during team drills.
“Besides that, I think it’s gone pretty well,” Glasgow said. “That was an anomaly. That was bad; was not happy about that. As soon as I felt it, I knew. I was just hoping I felt it wrong.”
How did he know?
“It got sort of caught in my hand; also, sort of slipped,” Glasgow said. “It was a combination of two things. I was like, ‘This is going to be bad.’"
Other than that, he’s been pretty good.
3. Another day, another impressive Marvin Jones catch: The receiver has about one or two of these per practice lately. On Tuesday, he turned back at the perfect time to catch a laser from Matthew Stafford on the sideline on Darrin Walls. Jones had great recognition on the play to turn and snag the ball in his body and then keep running. He has been one of the best players in camp for the Lions.
4. The offensive line had a good day: There were some issues in team drills, particularly with the second team, but this was the best day of camp that I could recall in individual work for the offensive line. The first-team line won all of their reps except for Ziggy Ansah against Taylor Decker, which is to be expected. Reserve Chase Farris, who is likely more of a practice squad candidate, stood out in the drill with the reserves, winning two matchups against A'Shawn Robinson and another against Gabe Wright. Something else to note -- defensive end Anthony Zettel worked inside against guards in this drill today. First time I noticed him doing that.
5. This and that: A handful of Lions players missed practice: tight end Eric Ebron (ankle), linebackers Jon Bostic (foot) and Zaviar Gooden (concussion), offensive tackle Michael Ola, safety Don Carey and tight end Matthew Mulligan. Lions coach Jim Caldwell declined to say what was wrong, if anything, with Mulligan after practice. With Ebron and Brandon Pettigrew out, Mulligan has been used as a first-team tight end. In his place, Adam Fuehne has taken reps with Cole Wick. … Tuesday was Detroit’s last open practice until the preseason game against Cincinnati on Thursday.