Mikel Leshoure Injury: Updates on Lions RB's Week 4 Status and Fantasy Value

Tyler Conway@jtylerconwayFeatured ColumnistSeptember 28, 2012

August 25, 2012; Oakland, CA, USA; Detroit Lions running back Mikel Leshoure (25) runs the ball against the Oakland Raiders in the first quarter at O.co Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Cary Edmondson-US PRESSWIRE
Cary Emondson-US PRESSWIRE

Fresh off a breakout performance in his NFL debut, Detroit Lions running back Mikel Leshoure is listed as questionable for Sunday's contest against the Minnesota Vikings with a groin injury, according to team blogger Tim Twentyman.

Running back Mikel Leshoure is listed as questionable after being limited all week in practice with a groin injury. Leshoure made his NFL debut last week in Tennessee, where he rushed for 100 yards and a touchdown.

UPDATE: Sunday, September 30 at 11:40 a.m. ET by Rob Goldberg

The Detroit Lions official Twitter account released the fact that Mikel Leshoure is healthy and will get the start on Sunday.


RB Mikel Leshoure will start for the #Lions today. #DETvsMIN

— Detroit Lions (@DetroitLionsNFL) September 30, 2012


This is good news for the Lions as they look break their two-game losing streak against the Minnesota Vikings. The running back proved last week that he is the team's best option on the ground and a key to a balanced attack.

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UPDATE: Sunday, September 30 at 10:35 a.m. ET by Rob Goldberg

According to Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports, Mikel Leshoure will play against the Minnesota Vikings.


Lions RB Mikel Leshoure, listed as questionable, will play. He is coming off a strong NFL debut last week

— Jason La Canfora (@JasonLaCanfora) September 30, 2012


Detroit used the former Illinois star as a full-time running back in his first game last week, and it is likely he sees similar action once again.

The only thing that should prevent fantasy owners from starting Leshoure is the matchup. The Vikings defense held Frank Gore to only 63 yards and no touchdowns last week and it is a significantly tougher opponent than the Tennessee Titans.

---End of Update---

Getting his first true taste of action last week against the Tennessee Titans, Leshoure carried the ball 26 times, gaining 100 yards and a touchdown. He even showed some surprisingly adept hands out of the backfield, catching four passes for 34 yards as well.

For the Lions, losing Leshoure for this week's game could be a huge blow. His performance in Week 3 seemingly shored up the team's running back woes and put them in a position to have a more balanced attack going forward.

If Leshoure is unable to go, it's likely that Kevin Smith, who opened the season as the Lions' starter, and Joique Bell will share the load. 

Fantasy-wise, there is little value to either Smith or Bell, and this is simply a situation worth monitoring going forward. Even if he sits out, the injury does not seem like a long-term affliction and is assuredly unrelated to the Achilles tear that ruined Leshoure's rookie season.

Nonetheless, leg injuries in running backs are always cause for concern. As a big-time waiver wire pickup this week, fantasy owners may be best served to keep the powerful back on the bench on Sunday even if he suits up.