Lions Inactives: Key Defensive Rookie Sitting Down Week 1

Levi Onwuzurike

Getty Levi Onwuzurike during the Lions game against the Steelers.

The Detroit Lions have waited a long time to kick off the 2021 season, and the San Francisco 49ers offer a stiff challenge as they enter Ford Field for Week 1. That’s even more true given what played out on Detroit’s injury report this week.

Already, the Lions will be down Taylor Decker, who will be out with a thumb injury he sustained in practice. There’s better news elsewhere, though, as the team has others ready to go who were potential injury cases earlier in the week and questionable heading into Sunday afternoon’s home opener.

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This week, the Lions’ inactive list doesn’t have many injured players at all, but rather players who are sitting out due to the decision of the staff. Only one rookie player wasn’t ready to go thanks to injury. That’s the good news even in a week where injury played out and the Lions lost a key player for their offensive front.

So what does Detroit’s first inactive list look like? The team revealed that in the hours just ahead of kickoff on Sunday, September 12.

Lions Inactives vs. 49ers

The Lions’ Week 1 inactive list goes as follows:

  • Levi Onwuzurike, Defensive End
  • Julian Okwara, Linebacker
  • Jermar Jefferson, Running Back
  • KhaDarel Hodge, Wide Receiver
  • Tom Kennedy, Wide Receiver
  • Tommy Kraemer, Guard
  • The good news for the Lions is T.J. Hockenson, D’Andre Swift, Nick Williams and Michael Brockers are all good to go for the game after looking like they could be limited being they were questionable. Onwuzurike not being in is a blow to the defensive front, but it’s a deep group that should be able to survive that. Otherwise, the Lions sit one of their new wideouts as they get him into the playbook and also sit a third running back for this week.

    Lions vs. 49ers Week 1 Primer

    The Lions start off their 2021 campaign at home against the 49ers looking to improve on last season’s dismal 5-11 finish. Interestingly enough, San Francisco finished the 2020 season in bad form as well going 6-10. To this end, it’s going to be a chance at redemption for both rosters as they get set to attack a new season on the field. Detroit has seen some major changes with Jared Goff taking over as quarterback, a changed wideout room as well as a brand new defensive approach under Aaron Glenn. Seeing how the defensive line fares as well as a young secondary will be key right off the bat. Whether the Lions get Jimmy Garoppolo or Trey Lance will be interesting to monitor as well, as it could change the game plan a bit for Dan Campbell’s team.

    Regardless, one of the more interesting variables in this game revolves around the road crowd. If the Detroit fans are revved-up like Dan Campbell wants, it could make life difficult on the 49ers, and pave the potential path toward an unlikely Week 1 upset on the field.

    Detroit will hope their depth can carry them in the trenches.

    READ NEXT: Romeo Okwara Explains Lions’ Top Defensive Goal vs. 49ers/a>

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