Two days after having to put defensive starters Robert Quinn and T.J. McDonald on the season-ending injured reserved list, the St. Louis Rams got a bit of good news, as starting cornerback Trumaine Johnson and kicker Greg Zuerlein were both upgradeded to probable for Sunday’s Rams home game at the Edward Jones Dome against the Detroit Lions.
Johnson, who had been sidelined for the past couple of weeks with a thigh injury, was a full participant in practice on Thursday and Friday. That news prompted head coach Jeff Fisher to express his optimism Friday after practice that Johnson, a fourth-year player out of the University of Montana, would be able to play Sunday.
“Yeah, he had a good day today,” Fisher said, “so I expect him to be back.”
Zuerlein, who has been out with a hip injury, had his kicking duties limited in practice the last couple of weeks, with the hope that the extra rest would allow him to recover faster. That wasn’t enough to get Zuerlein back in time for last week’s game, but the Rams are hoping that his ability to practice with the team every day this week is a sign that Zuerlein will be ready to go this weekend.
“Greg didn’t have any issues today,” Fisher said. “So we expect him… we limited his numbers today. But he kicked field goals. He kicked off a few times and he’s got the leg strength back.”
Another player whose status changed dramatically this week is cornerback Janoris Jenkins, who continues to go through the NFL-mandated concussion protocol. The Rams had hoped Jenkins would be feeling better by the end of the week, but that hasn’t happened. So St. Louis will go into Sunday’s game with Jenkins listed as doubtful.
“He did not practice today,” Fisher said. “He’s (still going through) the protocol and we listed him as doubtful.”
For Detroit, eight players, including six starters were listed as questionable for Sunday’s game. Wide receiver Calvin Johnson (ankle), who has been listed as questionable for four of Detroit’s last five games, but hasn’t missed a game this season, is one of the players on the questionable list.
Also marked as questionable for the Lions are defensive end Ezekiel Ansah (hamstring/elbow), wide receiver Lance Moore (ankle), tackle Michael Ola (knee), safety Glover Quin (ankle), defensive tackle Caraun Reid (ankle), center Travis Swanson (ankle), and linebacker Travis Lewis (ankle).
Detroit head coach Jim Caldwell told the Detroit-area media on Friday that he expected Johnson, Ola, and Quin to all play and start on Sunday.
St. Louis Rams Injury Report
DE William Hayes (thigh)
P Johnny Hekker (rest)
K Zach Hocker (thigh)
CB Trumaine Johnson (thigh)
QB Case Keenum (concussion)
TE Lance Kendricks (concussion)
WR Wes Welker (calf)
K Greg Zuerlein (hip)
CB Janoris Jenkins (concussion)
OT Andrew Donnal (knee)
S T.J. McDonald (shoulder)
DE Robert Quinn (back)
Detroit Lions Injury Report
DE Ezekiel Ansah (hamstring/elbow)
WR Calvin Johnson (ankle)
WR Lance Moore (ankle)
OT Michael Ola (knee)
S Glover Quin (ankle)
DT Caraun Reid (ankle)
C Travis Swanson (ankle)
LB Travis Lewis (ankle)