Detroit Lions' T.J. Hockenson, Penei Sewell return to practice, could play vs. Vikings

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T.J. Hockenson walked into his weekly news conference Friday with a beads of sweat on his forehead, a sign — perhaps — that the Detroit Lions' tight end will be ready to play Sunday against the Minnesota Vikings.

"I don’t know if that says anything, but obviously a couple more days left and we’ll see how it is on Sunday and just going from there," Hockenson said. "It is what it is. You never play in this game 100%, so it’s one of those things."

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Hockenson practiced on a limited basis Friday after sitting out most of the week with a knee injury he suffered in last week's loss to the Chicago Bears.

Detroit Lions tight end T.J. Hockenson (88) runs against San Francisco 49ers linebacker Fred Warner (54) during the second half at Ford Field in Detroit on Sunday, Sept. 12, 2021.
Detroit Lions tight end T.J. Hockenson (88) runs against San Francisco 49ers linebacker Fred Warner (54) during the second half at Ford Field in Detroit on Sunday, Sept. 12, 2021.

He said he "got clobbered low a couple times" in the game, and his injury was the cumulative impact of repetitive hits to the knees.

"Just taking a Wednesday and being precautionary about it, and yesterday doing a little bit and then today obviously just running around and trying to get some things accomplished and getting ready to roll on Sunday," he said.

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Hockenson said he planned to watch football Saturday "with a bag of ice" for his knee — his Iowa Hawkeyes have a key Big Ten game against Penn State — and Lions coach Dan Campbell sounded an optimistic tone that both Hockenson and left tackle Penei Sewell would be available this weekend.

Sewell missed practice Wednesday and Thursday, and returned on a limited basis Friday.

He can't play, the Lions (0-4) likely will start Will Holden at left tackle.

Goff honored

Lions quarterback Jared Goff was named the NFL Players Association's Community MVP this week for his role in a food drive the team hosted at Ford Field.

The Lions, in conjunction with Forgotten Harvest, distributed more than 40,000 pounds of fresh food and supplies to 500 needy families through a mobile food pantry. Goff and backup quarterback Tim Boyle were among the Lions who attended the drive.

Goff also has partnered with the Detroit Lions Foundation to donate proceeds from his JG16 apparel line to mutually agreed upon youth initiatives throughout Detroit.

Contact Dave Birkett at dbirkett@freepress.com. Follow him on Twitter @davebirkett.

This article originally appeared on Detroit Free Press: Detroit Lions' T.J. Hockenson, Penei Sewell may play Sunday