Cherilus Will Get Playing Time Against Pack
Gosder Cherilus (D. Centofanti/Getty)
Gosder Cherilus (D. Centofanti/Getty)

Posted Sep 12, 2008


Of the eight offensive tackles taken in the first round of this year's NFL draft, six started in Week 1. One was injured. One was healthy and didn't play a single snap -- the Lions' Gosder Cherilus.

Of the eight offensive tackles taken in the first round of this year's NFL draft, six started in Week 1. One was injured. One was healthy and didn't play a single snap -- the Lions' Gosder Cherilus.

And Cherilus, the 17th overall pick, plays right tackle, not left. He remains behind veteran George Foster.

But offensive coordinator Jim Colletto plans to give Cherilus some playing time in Sunday's home opener against Green Bay.

"We're going to probably try to get Gosder in the game some," Colletto said. "He needs to play."

How far behind Foster is Cherilus?

"He can probably play right now," Colletto said. "But we're probably right now going a little bit more with the experience factor at this point and work him in and get his feet on the ground."

Asked if Cherilus would rotate in at right tackle, Colletto said: "I don't know how much he'll rotate, but I'm going to try to get him in some at some point in the game."

Colletto said Foster played well Sunday at Atlanta except for the sack he allowed -- and Colletto explained the sack.

"It was a play that was checked to, which we really didn't have to do that, and he got caught with his pants down a little bit," Colletto said. "It surprised him. But really, overall he did a nice job pass protecting other than that one time."

Colletto has been concerned about injuries and position flexibility.

Cherilus has been the only tackle in uniform trained to play both sides. If he goes down and the Lions suffer another injury, they're sunk. Colletto said Foster and left tackle Jeff Backus might have to cross-train, too.

"We may have to start looking at teaching Backus and George to do the same things just to cover our bases," Colletto said.


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