Tim Boyle to start, Jared Goff inactive for Detroit Lions vs. Cleveland Browns

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CLEVELAND — Tim Boyle gathered his receivers for a quick pep talk after finishing early pregame warmups Sunday, then walked over to Jared Goff.

Goff, in a winter coat and hoodie, looked up at the sky with an open mouth as if he was catching raindrops from above.

Boyle, as expected, will make his first career start Sunday against the Cleveland Browns, while Goff, dealing with a strained oblique, is inactive for the first time as a Detroit Lion.

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Detroit Lions quarterback Tim Boyle scrambles with the ball against the Pittsburgh Steelers during the first quarter of a preseason game at Heinz Field on August 21, 2021.
Detroit Lions quarterback Tim Boyle scrambles with the ball against the Pittsburgh Steelers during the first quarter of a preseason game at Heinz Field on August 21, 2021.

Boyle has not played since breaking his right thumb in a preseason loss to the Indianapolis Colts. The Lions (0-8-1) activated him off injured reserve this week.

A backup for the Green Bay Packers the past three seasons, Boyle has attempted four career regular season passes and completed three for 15 yards, all in a Nov. 24, 2019, loss to the San Francisco 49ers.

He completed 56.4% of his passes in the preseason with one touchdown and no interceptions.

"Opportunities, especially in the NFL, come very few times, unfortunately, but that’s the beauty of the NFL, it’s so competitive," Boyle said this week. "It’s been a long journey. Just kind of reminiscing on my story, starting football when I was 6 years old and here I am as a 27-year-old and still blessed to have this opportunity. So it really is, it’s about preparation and always staying ready so yeah, I’ll be ready to go."

Boyle could be making the first of at least two starts, with the Lions scheduled to play on a short week Thursday in their Thanksgiving game against the Chicago Bears.

Goff has eight touchdowns and six interceptions on the season, and has thrown just one touchdown in the past five games.

Along with Goff, defensive end Trey Flowers (knee), sixth tackle Matt Nelson (ankle), running back Jermar Jefferson (knee/ankle), receiver Trinity Benson (knee), linebacker Jessie Lemonier and kicker Riley Patterson are inactive for the Lions.

Aldrick Rosas, who the Lions signed this week to the practice squad on the same day the Lions signed Patterson to their active roster, will handle kicking duties on a soggy day at FirstEnergy Stadium.

Taylor Decker, who missed practice time this week with an elbow injury, is active and expected to start at left tackle for the Lions.

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

This article originally appeared on Detroit Free Press: Tim Boyle to start, Jared Goff inactive for Lions vs. Browns