A key Lions rookie will be sidelined for the foreseeable future. Cornerback Ifeatu Melifonwu suffered a significant thigh injury during Monday’s loss to the Packers, reports Tim Twentyman of the team’s website (via Twitter).
Lions head coach Dan Campbell told reporters that Melifonwu will be out of the lineup for a “significant amount of time,” and the rookie is expected to need at least a few weeks to recover. The injury occurred in the second half of last night’s contest, with Melifonwu suffering the injury on a 50-yard grab by Davante Adams.
Following a standout career at Syracuse, Melifonwu was selected in the third round of this past year’s draft. The 6-foot-3 defensive back had a fumble recovery during his NFL debut in Week 1, and he ended up earning his first career start in Week 2. The 22-year-old saw time on 30 defensive snaps last night, collecting a pair of tackles and defending one pass.
The Lions were already scrambling for cornerback depth; Melifonwu only got the start because Jeff Okudah suffered a season-ending injury. Amani Oruwariye remains the starter at one of the cornerback spots, with former undrafted safety Bobby Price appearing to be the next man in line.