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Nick Fairley | Defensive Lineman

Team: Detroit Lions
Age / DOB:  (26) / 1/23/1988
Ht / Wt:  6'4' / 308
College: Auburn
Contract: view contract details

Latest News

Recent News

Lions declared DT Nick Fairley (knee) inactive for Sunday's Week 16 game at Chicago.
Fairley has been sidelined since Week 8 and could be done for the season. The Lions' defense hasn't missed a beat thanks in large part to their exceptional depth up front, and remain a top-shelf D/ST option against Jimmy Clausen Sunday. The rest of the Lions inactives: QB Kellen Moore, DE Larry Webster, WR Ryan Broyles, CB Mohammed Seisay, DT Caraun Reid, OL Rodney Austin. Dec 21 - 11:33 AM

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Player News


Lions DT Nick Fairley has rejected a plea deal in his 2012 DUI case, and will go to trial in February.

Quite the saga. It's still possible the sides come to an agreement before Fairley's trial date. Out indefinitely with a knee injury, it remains unclear if Fairley will play again this season. The No. 13 overall pick of the 2011 draft is headed to free agency.
Dec 9 - 5:52 PM

The Lions remain uncertain if Nick Fairley (knee) will return this season.

"Same thing I said a few weeks ago, I'm not real certain, to be honest with you," coach Jim Caldwell said of Fairley's status on Monday. The fact that the Lions have held Fairley off injured reserve is a sign they do in fact see light at the end of the tunnel, but it's possible he won't be ready before the postseason. Detroit's defense has remained effective without Fairley's presence in the middle, but hasn't been as dominant.
Dec 1 - 1:58 PM

Lions coach Jim Caldwell said the team doesn't have a timetable for DT Nick Fairley (knee) to return.

It conflicts with an earlier report that listed Fairley's timetable at 4-5 weeks. Caldwell said he's "not certain" if Fairley will return this year, but hasn't been told that he won't. Fairley should be considered out indefinitely, with an outside chance of returning late in the season for a playoff push. C.J. Mosley will replace Fairley next to Ndamukong Suh when he returns from suspension, with Caraun Reid playing in a situational role.
Oct 28 - 11:17 AM

ESPN Chicago's Michael C. Wright reports Lions DT Nick Fairley sprained his MCL and PCL and will be sidelined 4-5 weeks.

We'd call that good news after SI's Peter King offered a grim report earlier Monday morning, hinting it could be a season-ender. The Lions will hope to get Fairley back for the stretch run and in time for a playoff push. It's also good news for Fairley on a personal level, as he's in a contract year and could ill-afford a lengthy rehab. In the meantime, the Lions will turn to C.J. Mosley and Caraun Reid next to Ndamukong Suh.
Oct 27 - 6:33 PM

SI's Peter King is hearing the knee injury Lions DT Nick Fairley sustained Sunday is "bad."

Fairley's leg folded awkwardly under him after a collision with teammate Ndamukong Suh during the wild win in London. A Monday MRI will have the final word. Fairley, in the final year of his rookie contract, was a top-10 defensive tackle through the first eight weeks according to PFF's grades.
Oct 27 - 8:30 AM

Lions coach Jim Caldwell was not optimistic about Nick Fairley's knee injury following the Lions' Week 8 win over the Falcons.

"I'm not quite certain where he is right now," said Caldwell, "but obviously, when you're carried off the field, it's not the greatest news. We'll see what the doctors say about him." Fairley's right leg folded awkwardly under him after taking a hit from teammate Ndamukong Suh. Fairley had to be helped off the field, and was pointing to the inside of his knee on the bench. He could be out for a while. Fairley is in the final year of his rookie contract.
Oct 26 - 2:27 PM

Nick Fairley exited the Lions' Week 8 matchup with the Falcons with a knee injury.

Fairley had his right knee fold awkwardly under him after taking a hit from teammate Ndamukong Suh. He stayed down on the turf for a while before being helped off the field. Fairley has already been ruled out for the game, and could be looking at a serious knee injury. Fairley is in the final year of his rookie contract.
Oct 26 - 10:28 AM

Lions DT Nick Fairley has "practiced much better" over the past two weeks.

Fairley has shed ten pounds since being demoted to the second-string defense, and looked dominant in the Lions' final two preseason games. If the light has finally clicked on for Fairley, he and Ndamukong Suh should form one of the most dangerous interior-line combinations in the league.
Sep 6 - 10:47 AM

Lions DT Nick Fairley has shed ten pounds since mid-August and is now down to 305.

The Lions have ostensibly asked Fairley to play at a number of different weights over the course of the offseason, and now leading up to Week 1. Regardless of his girth, Fairley's turned in back-to-back dominant preseason games and had a sack in Detroit's exhibition finale. He's all set for Week 1 against the Giants.
Sep 1 - 5:15 PM

Lions DT Nick Fairley said his "eating habits have gotten in the way the past couple weeks," and he's now up to 315 pounds.

This explains why Fairley is running with the second-team defense, instead of next to Ndamukong Suh with the starters. Fairley wants to play at 305. In fairness to Fairley, the Lions have been all over the map with where they want his playing weight. Earlier in the year, he was too light, but now he's too heavy. It should only be a matter of time before he's back with the No. 1 defense.
Aug 20 - 1:08 PM

Lions DT Nick Fairley will remain with the second-team defense this week.

The Lions are tired of Fairley's inability to stay in shape. C.J. Mosley will begin the week with the 1s. Although we'd expect Fairley to regain his starting job at some point before Week 1, he's going to be on a short leash this season. The Lions have had enough of his act.
Aug 18 - 1:19 PM

Lions DT Nick Fairley worked mostly with the second-team defense in Detroit's second preseason game.

Fairley was demoted to the twos in practice and has yet to regain his starting spot. Fairley looked sluggish against Oakland, only recording one tackle and not getting any push. C.J. Mosley had three tackles starting in Fairley's place. Fairley will likely regain his job at some point, but his inability to keep weight off and apparent lack of effort are big concerns in a contract year.
Aug 16 - 10:28 AM

Lions DT Nick Fairley continued to run with the second-team defense during Tuesday night's practice.

An apparently motivated Fairley dropped nearly 30 pounds for the start of minicamp. But during the six-week break before training camp, he put 10 pounds right back on and appears to have continued to pack on the tonnage. Fairley's inability to control his weight even as he enters a contract year is concerning.
Aug 13 - 8:00 AM

Lions DT Nick Fairley worked with the second-team defense at Monday's practice.

Coach Jim Caldwell cautions to not read too much into the "demotion," but did say "he could be better." Fairley is still working to get to a "comfortable weight." The Lions asked Fairley to slim down following last season. He's now apparently too light. Fairley's entering his contract year. The coaches want more from him. He's fully expected to line up as the starter next to Ndamukong Suh.
Aug 11 - 9:51 PM

Depth Charts

Skill Players
QB1Matthew Stafford
2Dan Orlovsky
3Kellen Moore
RB1Joique Bell
2Reggie Bush
3Theo Riddick
4George Winn
GLB1Joique Bell
2Reggie Bush
3RB1Reggie Bush
2Joique Bell
FB1Jed Collins
WR11Calvin Johnson
2Jeremy Ross
WR21Golden Tate
2Corey Fuller
3Ryan Broyles
WR31Jeremy Ross
TE1Brandon Pettigrew
2Eric Ebron
3Kellen Davis
K1Matt Prater