2014 DRAFT GUIDE
Lions WRs showing promise, even without Johnson

By NOAH TRISTER - AP Sports Writer
    2014-08-18 18:11

ALLEN PARK, Mich. (AP) - The Detroit Lions acquired Golden Tate to play alongside Calvin Johnson.

This week, he might finally have a chance to do that.

''I can't wait to get out there with him,'' Tate said. ''I just love playing the game. To get out there with the best receiver in the league and one of the best to ever play the game is going to be super fun.''

Johnson hasn't played in Detroit's first two preseason games, but that seems likely to change this week against Jacksonville. In Johnson's absence, the Lions still looked impressive throwing the ball last week at Oakland, and Detroit has several receivers who are creating competition for playing time.

Tate left Super Bowl champion Seattle to sign with the Lions after catching 64 passes last season. He figures to be Matthew Stafford's top target aside from Johnson, but there are signs the receiving corps could have more depth than in the past.

Even without Johnson on the field, Stafford went 9 of 10 for 88 yards against the Raiders. He completed a 28-yard scoring pass to Tate and added a 4-yard touchdown pass to Kris Durham. He completed passes to five receivers on three drives.

''A lot of guys got opportunities and they made the most of them,'' Stafford said. ''That's what we're looking for this time of year. Obviously we did some things that were positive on the offensive and defensive side of the ball early.''

Durham and Stafford were college teammates at Georgia, and Durham caught 38 passes for the Lions last season. Detroit is also hopeful that Ryan Broyles can stay healthy and contribute. Broyles ruptured an Achilles tendon last October - after he had come back from torn anterior cruciate ligaments in both knees.

''Every game he shows a little more who he is. He gains a little more confidence in his leg,'' Tate said. ''For him mentally to focus in and get himself better, after being let down so many times, and to come out here now and just ball out, says a lot about him and how strong he is mentally.''

The Lions also have running back Reggie Bush and tight end Brandon Pettigrew as pass-catching threats, and they drafted tight end Eric Ebron in the first round.

Wide receiver Corey Fuller, a sixth-round draft pick last year who has not played in an NFL game, is trying to make an impression as well. He caught the winning touchdown pass in Detroit's preseason opener against Cleveland.

He's trying to keep his goals and expectations simple as the exhibition season progresses.

''No mental errors, playing the best that I can play,'' Fuller said. ''Keep my pad level low, come out of my break, just little things.''

The third preseason game is usually taken the most seriously by coaching staffs, at least in terms of how much the starters play. Detroit coach Jim Caldwell indicated Johnson might finally make an appearance against the Jaguars.

''We plan to get him some work this week,'' Caldwell said. ''That's today that I'm telling you that. If toward the end of the week, something adjusts where we have to adjust here and there - and it could be that with a number of different guys, but we plan to get him some work this week.''

NOTES: Caldwell said DT Nick Fairley remains a reserve, although he gave no indication how long that might last. ''He's not starting right now, he's second team,'' Caldwell said. ''It's a long week. We've got a lot of work to do in between, and typically like most games, we'll take a look at where we are and make an assessment on that toward the end of the week.''

---

AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org and www.twitter.com/AP-NFL

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Alameda Ta'amuDec 21 07:42p

The Arizona Cardinals have declared DL Alameda Ta'amu, OG Anthony Steen, WR Brittan Golden, SS Chris D. Clemons, QB Drew Stanton, OG Jonathan Cooper, DL Kareem Martin inactive for Week 16.

Chris MatthewsDec 21 07:32p

The Seattle Seahawks have declared WR Chris Matthews, DL Demarcus Dobbs, WR Kevin Norwood, C Max Unger, OT Russell Okung, TE Tony Moeaki, DL Travian Robertson inactive for Week 16.

Ahmad DixonDec 21 11:52a

The Minnesota Vikings have declared SS Ahmad Dixon, LB Anthony Barr, OT Carter Bykowski, OG Charlie Johnson, TE Kyle Rudolph, CB Shaun Prater, FB Zach Line inactive for Week 16.

Devier PoseyDec 21 11:52a

The Houston Texans have declared WR DeVier Posey, TE Garrett Graham, LB Jason Ankrah, S Josh Aubrey, LB Mike Mohamed, QB Tom Savage, OG Xavier Su'a-Filo inactive for Week 16.

A.J. KleinDec 21 11:52a

The Carolina Panthers have declared LB A.J. Klein, OG Amini Silatolu, CB Carrington Byndom, OT David Foucault, RB DeAngelo Williams, DL Kyle Love, SS Robert Lester inactive for Week 16.

Charles GodfreyDec 21 11:52a

The Atlanta Falcons have declared CB Charles Godfrey, LB James Anderson, OG Jon Asamoah, CB Ricardo Allen, QB Sean Renfree, DL Stansly Maponga, LB Tyler Starr inactive for Week 16.

Jamarca SanfordDec 21 11:52a

The New Orleans Saints have declared SS Jamarca Sanford, DL Lawrence Virgil, LB Moise Fokou, WR Seantavius Jones, CB Stanley Jean-Baptiste, OT Terron Armstead, RB Travaris Cadet inactive for Week 16.

Justin BrownDec 21 11:52a

The Pittsburgh Steelers have declared OG Chris Hubbard, DL Clifton Geathers, CB Ike Taylor, WR Justin Brown, QB Landry Jones, TE Matt Spaeth, SS Troy Polamalu inactive for Week 16.

Clifton GeathersDec 21 11:52a

The Pittsburgh Steelers have declared OG Chris Hubbard, DL Clifton Geathers, CB Ike Taylor, WR Justin Brown, QB Landry Jones, TE Matt Spaeth, SS Troy Polamalu inactive for Week 16.

Carl BradfordDec 21 11:42a

The Green Bay Packers have declared DL Bruce Gaston, LB Carl Bradford, CB Davon House, C Garth Gerhart, WR Jeff Janis, TE Justin Perillo, QB Scott Tolzien inactive for Week 16.

Chris McCainDec 21 11:42a

The Miami Dolphins have declared LB Chris McCain, OT Dallas Thomas, RB Daniel Thomas, CB Don Jones, WR Matt Hazel, OG Nate Garner, WR Rishard Matthews inactive for Week 16.

Arthur BrownDec 21 11:42a

The Baltimore Ravens have declared LB Arthur Brown, DL Casey Walker, CB Chris Greenwood, C Gino Gradkowski, WR Michael Campanaro, OG Ryan Jensen, DL Terrence Cody inactive for Week 16.

Aaron MurrayDec 21 11:42a

The Kansas City Chiefs have declared QB Aaron Murray, RB Charcandrick West, WR Donnie Avery, C Eric Kush, OT Laurent Duvernay-Tardif, CB Marcus Cooper, DL Nick X. Williams inactive for Week 16.

Gary BarnidgeDec 21 11:42a

The Cleveland Browns have declared OT Andrew McDonald, TE Gary Barnidge, RB Glenn Winston, CB Joe Haden, DB K'Waun Williams, WR Rodney Smith, OT Vinston Painter inactive for Week 16.

Chris ConteDec 21 11:42a

The Chicago Bears have declared FS Chris Conte, QB David Fales, OG Kyle Long, PK Robbie Gould, CB Terrance Mitchell, DL Trevor Scott, DL Will Sutton inactive for Week 16.

Dakota DozierDec 21 11:33a

The New York Jets have declared OL Dakota Dozier, SS Jaiquawn Jarrett, QB Matt Simms, FS Rontez Miles, DL T.J. Barnes, WR Walter Powell, OG Wesley Johnson inactive for Week 16.

Alfonzo DennardDec 21 11:33a

The New England Patriots have declared CB Alfonzo Dennard, OG Dan Connolly, RB James White, OT Jordan Devey, WR Julian Edelman, CB Kyle Arrington, RB LeGarrette Blount inactive for Week 16.

Anthony CollinsDec 21 11:32a

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have declared OT Anthony Collins, FB Evan Rodriguez, CB Isaiah Frey, DL Lawrence Sidbury, RB Mike James, WR Robert Herron, WR Solomon Patton inactive for Week 16.

Kelvin BenjaminDec 21 11:22a

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Zach ErtzDec 20 07:42p

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Ryan MathewsDec 20 07:22p

San Diego Chargers RB Ryan Mathews (ankle) is inactive Saturday, Dec. 20, for Week 16.

Ryan MathewsDec 20 07:12p

The San Diego Chargers have declared LB Cordarro Law, DL Damion Square, CB Greg Ducre, WR Keenan Allen, P Mike Scifres, DL Ryan Carrethers, RB Ryan Mathews inactive for Week 16.

Carlos HydeDec 20 07:12p

San Francisco 49ers RB Carlos Hyde (ankle) is inactive Saturday, Dec. 20.

Ahmad BrooksDec 20 07:02p

The San Francisco 49ers have declared LB Ahmad Brooks, OG Andrew Tiller, RB Carlos Hyde, OG Joe Looney, QB Josh X. Johnson, WR Stevie Johnson, CB Tramaine Brock inactive for Week 16.

DeAndre HopkinsDec 20 06:42p

Houston Texans WR DeAndre Hopkins (ankle) will be a game-time decision Sunday, Dec. 21, after not practicing all week.

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