Detroit Lions No. 2 wide receiver Nate Burleson is having a terrific season through three weeks, as he has hauled in 19 passes for 239 yards as a major weapon for Matthew Stafford in the Lions offense. Teams can’t just throw the house at Calvin Johnson, because Nate Burleson is more than capable of going off for a big game. We saw that in the Week 1 rivalry game against the Minnesota Vikings, as the Vikings were able to stifle Johnson but yielded six receptions for 78 yards to Burleson in a Lions victory.
According to Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press, Nate Burleson broke his arm in two different places after being injured in a car accident this morning. Burleson was driving home after watching the Monday Night Football game with his teammates, and the crash only involved his car. Also, there was no alcohol involved, and, thank goodness, the only thing Burleson injured was his arm.
Burleson is expected to be out 4-6 weeks, so the Detroit Lions will surely miss their veteran receiver during that significant time frame. It’s a sizeable blow to the flow of the offense, and it will be up to two young receivers in Ryan Broyles and Pat Edwards to pick up the slack, with Broyles’s health being of the most concern here. Tight end Brandon Pettigrew will also need to step up for the next few weeks, since they’ll need him to play a big role in moving the chains and helping to draw coverage away from guys like Johnson and Broyles. The Lions offense has enough weapons to succeed without Burleson, but it is a heavy loss and the Lions have a tough part of the schedule coming up in the next six weeks (twice against Chicago, once at Green Bay, and then games at Dallas and Cincy).