What is not an accomplishment for 99 percent of NFL players is a big step forward for Detroit Lions running back Mikel Leshoure . He practiced in pads Monday one day after practicing with the team Sunday. That marks the first time duing camp that Leshoure has been able to practice on back-to-back days. Leshoure, who lost all of the 2011 season due to an Achilles tendon tear, had been nursing a hamstring strain since the second day of camp. He took part in individual drills last week, but didn't join his teammates in practice until yesterday.
It's unclear if Leshoure will finally see preseason action this weekend, but I think the Lions will err on the side of caution. If everything goes smoothly -- which is far from guaranteed with Leshoure -- he should be healthy in time for Week 1. Unfortuantely, he won't be able to play in the first two games due to a suspension stemming from his offseason arrests. For that time, Kevin Smith is the favorite to carry the load for the Lions. After that, we'll examine where Leshoure fits in. He has to worry about getting into football shape, staying on the field and catching up on all of the time he lost being off of it, both in this year and last. We don't really know if Leshoure will be the same guy that the Lions drafted considering the career-changing nature that Achilles tears can sometimes have on a running back. Leshoure's health issues make him a high-risk pick for sure. But he also has a lot of upside for a player you can take during the second half of your draft.