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Tuesday, October 7, 2003
Updated: October 8, 1:37 PM ET
Rogers breaks collarbone in practice

ESPN.com news services

DETROIT -- Charles Rogers will not be around to help the Detroit Lions break out of their slump.

Charles Rogers
Rogers

The rookie receiver broke his right collarbone in practice Tuesday and is expected to miss at least a month.

Rogers, the No. 2 overall pick in the draft, got tangled up with cornerback Dre' Bly, landed on his shoulder and was taken to a local hospital.

"I told Dre' Bly it wasn't his fault," Detroit coach Steve Mariucci said. "It happens sometimes when guys compete. We do the best we can as players and coaches to minimize it, but it's a contact sport."

The Lions won't know the exact diagnosis for Rogers until Friday at the earliest.

Doctors reset the collarbone Tuesday, and will have to decide whether or not Rogers needs surgery. If he does need surgery, it raises the possibility of Rogers missing the remainder of the season. If he does not, he will miss anywhere from four to eight weeks.

The Lions have lost four straight games since Rogers scored two touchdowns in the season-opening game against Arizona. Rogers leads the Lions with 22 receptions for 243 yards and three TDs in five games.

With Rogers out, Mariucci said Az-Zahir Hakim, Bill Schroeder, Scotty Anderson and Shawn Jefferson will have to pick up the slack. Hakim and Schroeder, who signed with Detroit as free agents last year, have combined for just 20 receptions

"I told the team after practice when somebody is out for a while, somebody or some group of players have to make up for that," Mariucci said.

"You know the whole committee thing we did at running back? We're going to have a committee of wide receivers. We need to decide if we need to add another receiver for practice, for legs, as a returner possibly. We'll look through that the next couple of days."

Injuries have also sidelined Detroit's top running back, James Stewart, kick returner Eddie Drummond and the team's No. 2 and 3 cornerbacks, Chris Cash and Andre Goodman.

During training camp, Rogers dislocated his left ring finger and missed the first two preseason games.

Detroit drafted the former Michigan State star hoping he would fill the big-play void the Lions have lacked since Barry Sanders retired just before the 1999 season.

Quarterback Joey Harrington and Rogers have shown signs of becoming comfortable with each other on the field, but the Lions still have stumbled.

"I still feel very confident in the guys that we have," Harrington said. "They're guys that have been playing for us all year and have caught a lot of balls between them. They know the offense very well and I have no doubt that those guys are going to come and play big for us."

Information from the Associated Press was used in this report.