July 28, 2012; Allen Park, MI, USA; Detroit Lions running back Mikel Leshoure (25) completes drills during training camp at the Detroit Lions training facility. Mandatory Credit: Tim Fuller-US PRESSWIRE

Schwartz, Leshoure eye Saturday for the running back's preseason debut

Second-year running back Mikel Leshoure is on pace to play for the Lions this Saturday against the Oakland Raiders, according to MLive.com’s Anwar Richardson.

This will be Leshoure’s first time ever suiting up as a Detroit Lion on game day. Leshoure missed the entire 2011 season after injuring his Achilles tendon.

There will be a ton of critics watching his every move. Questions that people are dying to get answers to include:

  • Can he cut left, right or get up field?
  • Can he run at full-speed against a live defense?
  • Will he be able to sustain a tackle from an opposing team?
  • How far away does he look from being 100%?

Most importantly, I’ll be interested to see how comfortable he looks playing actual football. It has been since his junior year at Illinois that he has carried the ball in a meaningful way and I would imagine that getting on the field and staying there will be a priority for Leshoure this year.

I am also curious to see who is going to fill the role of Kevin Smith’s backup in Leshoure’s absence. Leshoure is going to serve a two-game suspension during the regular season because of off-the-field arrests he had earlier this year. I think Stephfon Green is going to be somebody who wants to really impress the coaches and should he play good the next two games, he might earn himself a spot on the practice squad.

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Tags: Detroit Lions Jim Schwartz Mikel Leshoure NFC North NFL

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