Mikel Leshoure Reinstated and Expected to Start "Before Long"

Leshoure reinstated, expected to start "before long"

9/17/12 in NFL   |   Matthew_Shovlin   |   735 respect

Aug 30, 2012; Detroit, MN, USA; Detroit Lions running back Mikel Leshoure (25) runs the ball in the second quarter against the Buffalo Bills in a preseason game at Ford Field. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Weber-US PresswireThe Detroit Lions reinstated running back Mikel Leshoure from the reserve/suspended list on Monday. Leshoure was suspended two games for violating the NFL's substance abuse policy - he had two marijuana-related arrests during the offseason. The 2011 second round pick tore his Achilles' tendon in the preseason last year, so this Sunday should be his professional regular season debut.

The Lions have had serious struggles with their running game so far this season. Of the 30 teams that have played two games, the Lions are 24th in rushing yards. They seemed eager to get a running game established Sunday night against the 49ers, but could do no such thing. Granted, the Niners were the best team in the league against the run last year, but the Lions still looked awful. Their two running backs, Kevin Smith and Joique Bell, had a combined 22 carries for 67 yards (3.0 yards per carry). The fact that Bell, who had one career rushing attempt previous to last night's game, even played suggests that the Lions are desperately looking to options other than Smith.

This has lead the Detroit Free Press to report that Leshoure is "expected to take over as the starter before long." Leshoure is an early-down talent and should help the Lions establish a running game that can give their receivers more breathing room in the secondary. He's a good fantasy player to stash for the time being, as one good string of productive carries could be enough for the Lions to start giving him the bulk of the early-down backfield work.
Notify me by email about comments that follow mine. Preview