DETROIT LIONS DAILY UPDATE FOR THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 14, 2006

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TODAY'S NEWS

  • The Lions practiced on the outdoor field in shells (shoulder pads, helmets and shorts) today at the team headquarters and training facility in Allen Park.
  • The following players have been listed on the Detroit Lions' injury report: WR Shaun Bodiford (knee) and TE Casey FitzSimmons (wrist) are out. LG Ross Verba (hamstring) is questionable. Bodiford, FitzSimmons and Verba each missed the team portion of practice. The Lions did not have any changes to their injury report today.
  • The following players have been listed on the Chicago Bears' injury report: WR Justin Gage (rib), S Chris Harris (ankle), LB Hunter Hillenmeyer (head), DE Israel Idonije (ankle) and TE Gabriel Reid (back) and are questionable. Reid missed the team portion of practice. DT Tommie Harris (ankle) and RB J.D. Runnels (ankle) were removed from the Bears' injury list today after being listed as questionable on Wednesday.
  • Tickets remain for the 13th annual Detroit Lions Courage House Dinner that will feature Pro Football Hall of Fame quarterback Bart Starr as its keynote speaker. A special award also will be presented to former Pittsburgh Steelers' star and Detroit native Jerome Bettis. The event will be held at Ford Field on October 17, 2006 beginning at 5:30 PM. Several Detroit Lions' players also will attend the banquet that will benefit HAVEN, Oakland County's premier center for the prevention and treatment of domestic violence, sexual assault and child abuse. Proceeds will target the center's child abuse prevention and treatment programs. Previous banquets have raised approximately $1.2 million for HAVEN. Starr led Vince Lombardi's Green Bay Packers to a record five NFL Championships and was named the Most Valuable Player in both Super Bowls I and II. He was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1977. Bettis retired this year with a Super Bowl XL Championship ring after a 13-year NFL career with Steelers and the Rams. He will receive the Community Courage Award at the Courage House Dinner, recognizing his commitment to community service as well as his outstanding play on the field. For information on tickets and sponsorships, contact Kim Doverspike of Lions' Community Affairs at 313-216-4171 or Christine Farah, sponsorship chairman, at 248-344-2291.
  • Detroit will play their first divisional opponent this season when they travel to Chicago to battle the Bears at Soldier Field. In the last eight meetings between the two teams, six games have been decided by six points or less with each team winning four games. This week, Detroit will look to rebound from a heartbreaking 6-9 loss to the defending NFC Champion Seattle Seahawks while Chicago looks to win their second straight NFC North matchup after shutting out the Packers, 19-0, last week at Lambeau Field.

LIONS HEAD COACH ROD MARINELLI
Opening Statement: "We had a good chance to get out here on the grass and get our footing right - get a feel of it. Now it's the time to continue to execute. It's the last full day in pads, tomorrow we have to polish and get ready to go."

On T Rex Tucker playing at right tackle: "Yeah, I think he might. He's feeling pretty good - moving around good. It was good work for him today."

On whether Tucker will start Sunday: "I believe we would start him right now. We'll watch the tape tonight - that's for sure. It looks like he's ready to roll."

On if G Barry Stokes will play left guard: "He can play both tackles, he's going to swing and play both tackles. He's a guy that goes in and does just about anything at any place. He's a good veteran for us."

On the value of practicing on the grass: "I think the biggest thing for me is it's slower. We have good speed and it makes you feel slower. The footing - its not just receivers, its pass rushers - all of a sudden you have to make a corner and you're used to planting and dropping a shoulder and driving it, it's not the same. Tackling is different, your head has to be up; so it's just getting a feel underneath you a little bit. Tomorrow I'm going to go inside to play with our speed again - one more day - just to get fast. We looked slow today, we have to go get the speed back, it is what it is."

On if Sims will be fined for the hit on Seahawks QB (Matt) Hasselbeck: "We got the letter and Phil Snow is making sure Sims understands it all - you can't do it (make that kind of hit). The other guy came from the other way and dived over the top, Cory was coming the other way. Sims was sprinting - it was full dead speed - but, he has to learn when it's a quarterback you have to go over the top."

Courtesy of the Lions