3 Reasons Detroit Lions Rookie Nick Fairley's Injury Isn't Cause for Alarm
“The examination of Nick Fairley’s foot today by Dr. Bob Anderson resulted in a diagnosis consistent with that of Lions’ team physicians that surgical correction was required. Accordingly, surgery was successfully performed this afternoon in Charlotte, N.C., by Dr. Anderson. Nick is expected to miss a significant portion of training camp.”
So what does this mean to the beleaguered franchise?
It means Detroit’s number one draft pick in 2011 is going to miss some time, an issue that Lions fans have learned to grow accustomed to.
Injuries happen in the NFL.
But in only the first week of training camp is it already time to sound the alarms?
And here are three reasons why.
No. 1—Fairley Shouldn’t Miss Regular Season Time
Injured defensive tackle Nick Fairley will continue to watch and learn from the sideline. AP PHOTO
It’s been reported that Nick Fairley will most likely miss a significant portion of training camp. This doesn’t mean that Fairley won’t be present at training camp learning the things vital to the rookies growth in 2011.
Fairley is just that: a rookie in the National Football League. Ndamukong Suh’s don’t come along all that often.
Detroit doesn’t need Fairley to have a Suh type impact, that isn’t why the Lions drafted him at 13th overall. They drafted him because he was to good a talent to pass up, he was the best player available.
I didn’t necessarily believe that the Lions were in the position to start drafting out of luxury, but I knew that Fairley was an absolute steal at 13.
As far as the injury is concerned, he is expected to be back at full strength by Week One of the 2011 Regular Season.
There is no doubt that the Lions will be meticulous in terms of teaching play recognition and facilitating mental preparation with Fairley in the meantime.
No. 2—Detroit Has Quality Depth at the Defensive Tackle Position
Fairley looks on from the sideline. Daniel Mears / The Detroit News
Even prior to the selection of Nick Fairley in last Aprils NFL draft, the Lions had quality depth at the defensive tackle position.
Detroit’s defensive line was already considered to be on par with the best that the National Football League had to offer.
Ndamukong Suh’s reputation now precedes itself. He had just about as big an impact a player could have on a team for the Lions in 2010.
Suh is already regarded as one of the preeminent defensive talents in the entire league.
If Matthew Stafford isn’t considered the face of the Lions’ franchise then Suh undoubtedly is.
Additionally, Detroit’s depth at the defensive line position includes the talents of Corey Williams and Sammie Hill.
A tandem that in mostly relief duty registered a combined 67 tackles, 4.5 sacks and even an interception in 2010.
There is no doubt that Fairley will be permitted the time for a full recovery with the depth that Detroit currently has at defensive tackle position.
No. 3—Nick Fairley Is Injured, at Least It Isn’t Matthew Stafford
Stafford looks strong in training camp. Daniel Mears / The Detroit News
If Matthew Stafford falls subject to another significant injury in 2011, I will sound the alarm myself.