Each week, we’ll take a look at how the Detroit Lions' rookies fared the week before. This series will typically run the mornings after games.
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- After a first half of the season when the Lions got next to nothing out of their rookie class, Detroit is at least seeing a healthy group now.
First-round pick Eric Ebron returned to the lineup Sunday and caught all four passes thrown to him. Second-round pick Kyle Van Noy saw a few more snaps than a week ago, but remains a work in progress.
So these are signs of progress for Detroit, even if the Lions aren’t getting the immediate impact out of this rookie class that they did a season ago when Ezekiel Ansah, Larry Warford and Sam Martin were immediate impact players.
Here is how the rookies fared Sunday:
TE Ebron (first round, North Carolina): Returning from a hamstring injury and playing the most significant time of his season. Ebron caught all four passes thrown his way for 22 yards and lined up all over the field, which seemed to be the plan for him from the time he was drafted. It was the most comfortable he looked on the field, and he seemed happy with what he was able to do after the game. He was also flagged for an offensive pass interference penalty in the first half. With Brandon Pettigrew out, Ebron played 33 snaps -- the most of any Detroit tight end.
LB Van Noy (second round, BYU): After playing only two snaps in his debut last week, he saw a little more action Sunday, including making his first big play -- a tackle for loss on a slow handoff between Drew Stanton and Andre Ellington. He is still a long way from the player Detroit needs him to be, but he had an impact play in a game for the first time. In all, Van Noy played seven snaps -- five more than in his debut. He also had 17 special teams snaps.
OL Swanson (third round, Arkansas): He played every snap at right guard in place of the injured Warford. According to Pro Football Focus, Swanson only allowed one hurry of quarterback Matthew Stafford, but had a rough minus-4.2 overall grade. That is mostly due to run blocking, where he graded out at a minus-4.8 by the PFF metric.
DE Larry Webster (fourth round, Bloomsburg): Webster was inactive Sunday.
CB Nevin Lawson (fourth round, Utah State): Lawson is on injured reserve with dislocated toes. His season is over.
DT Caraun Reid (fifth round, Princeton): Reid did not record a statistic in his four defensive snaps. He also had one special teams snap. His role now is clearly the fourth defensive tackle.
WR TJ Jones (sixth round, Notre Dame): Is eligible to start practicing and potentially come off the PUP list if the Lions choose to do that.
OL Cornelius Lucas (undrafted, Kansas State): LaAdrian Waddle's various injuries continue to give Lucas playing time. He entered the game when Waddle left with an ankle injury and played 15 snaps. PFF credits him with one quarterback hurry, but otherwise he was pretty decent and didn’t have any glaring mistakes. He is learning.
CB Mohammed Seisay (undrafted, Nebraska): He eventually ended up working his way into the game in dime looks. He played three overall snaps and made one tackle. He also had eight snaps on special teams.