As expected, Lions Matthew Stafford to start at Bucs; Ziggy Ansah active

Ameer Abdullah, Dwayne Washington sit

Matthew Stafford will start against the Buccaneers at Tampa Bay today, as expected. The Lions quarterback left last Sunday’s game in the fourth quarter with a “nasty bruise” on his right, throwing hand. He had limited practice all week and was listed as questionable on Friday’s injury report.

No doubt about it, Stafford is tough. It will be his 109th straight start which ranks third among active NFL quarterbacks. Matt Ryan is first with 128, followed by Philip Rivers with 118.

Dan Orlovsky, the Lions’ backup quarterback from 2014 to 2016, tweeted this morning: “QB’s get bruised hands often. For the Lions fans out there I know Stafford spends a lot of time throughout the year working on grip. Wrist and hand strength. Little thing that goes a long way, Especially in situations like this. I imagine he’ll be able to throw it fine.”

Running back Ameer Abdullah (neck) is inactive for the second straight week. He was limited in practice all week and also was declared questionable on Friday. Ian Rapoport from the NFL Network, reported this morning that Abdullah is healthy enough to play but it’s a coach’s decision to sit him.

Rookie Tion Green, who made an impressive debut last week, is active for the second straight week. Running back Dwayne Washington, who is not injured, will sit out again this week.

Defensive end Ziggy Ansah (ankle) is active after missing practice on Wednesday and Thursday and being limited on Friday.

Center Travis Swanson (knee) returns after missing last week’s game. Right guard T.J. Lang (foot) who only practiced Friday and on a limited basis is a go.

Right tackle Rick Wagner, who injured an ankle last Sunday, was declared out on Friday.

Returner/cornerback Jamal Agnew (knee) will miss his third straight game.

Other Lions’ inactives: WR Bradley Marquez, LB Nick Bellore and tackle Emmett Cleary.

Inactives for the Bucs: QB Ryan Griffin, S Josh Robinson, CB Vernon Hargreaves III, S T.J. Ward , OL Mike Liedtke, WR Bobo Wilson and DT Clinton McDonald.


Author: Paula Pasche

Paula Pasche, a veteran sports writer, covers the Detroit Lions for her Lions Lowdown blog. She has written two books, "Game of My Life Detroit Lions" and "100 Things Lions Fans Should Know & Do Before They Die" which are available at bookstores and on She won first place for column writing from the Society of Professional Journalists in Detroit (Class B) in 2011, 2012 and 2013 and was The Oakland Press 2010 Staffer of the Year.

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