The Detroit Lions, along with being a pretty good team over the last season and a half or so, also have built nice roster depth. Injuries happen in a collision sport, and they've been able to navigate them pretty well this season.
But there are only 53 spots on the active roster, and there are some notable decisions and situations coming up for the Lions.
-Will C.J. Gardner-Johnson be able to return, as he has teased?
-Quarterback Hendon Hooker will need to be put on the active roster within the next 13 days
-Bruce Irvin will need a roster spot after no more than two more practice squad elevations
-DT Quinton Bohanna has exhausted his three standard practice squad elevations; he will have to be signed to the active roster if the Lions want to keep playing him
-James Houston may be able to return from IR sometime this month
-DT Tyson Alualu, signed this week, will need a roster spot at some point if he's up to par
On Wednesday, Houston said he expects to be back before the playoffs.
That's potentially six roster spots that may have someone to fill them. Of those, Irvin and Hooker feel like locks, with Alualu an easy third if/when he is deemed fit to play. Gardner-Johnson and Houston are injury question marks until further notice. Bohanna has been fine, but he's ultimately replaceable if the Lions don't think he can help replace Alim McNeill, who will miss at least the next four games on IR with a right knee sprain.
So we'll narrow to three 53-man roster spots the Lions will have someone ready to fill at some point soon, and they'll need to open up those spots. Practice squad maneuvering could keep young players like Steven Gilmore, Trevor Nowaske and Antoine Green around there.
But let's get a little juicier here.
Here are three Lions players who may not make it to the end of the season still on the roster.