Concern came when he was spotted by a reporter leaving the locker room in Kansas City wearing a walking boot. Head coach Dan Campbell called him a "tough SOB", while revealing he had played basically the whole game against the Chiefs with an ankle injury.
Then Taylor Decker missed practice on Tuesday, was listed as out on Wednesday's practice estimate and he missed Thursday's practice too. Friday morning, Campell called his left tackle "a little less than questionable" for Sunday's game against the Seattle Seahawks. And Decker was listed doubtful on the final injury report for the week.
All injury gamesmanship went out the window on Saturday, with Decked downgraded to out for Sunday's game.
In other roster moves defensive lineman Josh Paschal (knee) and cornerback Khalil Dorsey were placed on IR, while cornerback Chase Lucas and offensive lineman Kayode Awosika were elevated from the practice squad to the 53-man roster.
The elevation of Awosika lines the Lions up to have eight offensive lineman active on Sunday, and thus be able to have 48 players in uniform instead of 47.
How will the Detroit Lions replace Taylor Decker on Sunday?
We and others have written about it all week, but with Decker officially out a refresher is in order.
When Decker missed the first eight games of the 2021 season with a hand injury, Penei Sewell moved over to left tackle while Matt Nelson stepped in to start at right tackle. Nelson could just step in at left tackle for Decker, but that's a bad idea because he's barely roster-worthy, let alone starting-caliber. Another option, with Sewell moving to left tackle, is to shift Halapoulivaati Vaitai out to right tackle (where he started his Lions' career) and install Graham Glasgow at right guard.
There's a case to not move Sewell off right tackle to have less moving parts on the offensive line for Sunday, with Vaitai moving over to left tackle and Glasgow stepping in at right guard for Vaitai. I don't love the idea of Vaitai at left tackle, but the case for it can't be ignored in a certain light and Jeff Risdon of Lions Wire outlined how it could work better.
If Decker is missing a game, it's clear his ankle injury is worse than it might have originally seemed. Ideally it'll just be one game, with an eye on making sure he's not battling the issue for several games because he tried to play in Week 2.