The Detroit Lions might need running back Ronnie Brown sooner rather than later.
The Lions started practice Wednesday without Jahvid Best, who is out with concussion-like symptoms.
The Philadelphia Eagles said Tuesday that they dealt Brown to Detroit for Jerome Harrison and an undisclosed pick in the 2013 draft.
Brown wasn’t on the field when reporters had access to practice, but Detroit coach Jim Schwartz talked about the acquisition in a conference call with Atlanta-area reporters. He said Brown can get up to speed quickly because he’s a veteran who played in Miami for Lions offensive coordinator Scott Linehan.
”He brings a lot of value to the team so we’re excited about getting him and getting him on the field as quick as we can, Schwartz said.
Detroit (5-1) might need Brown for Sunday’s home game against Atlanta (3-3), perhaps rotating him with Maurice Morris and Keiland Williams. The team has also signed running back James Davis to the practice team and released tight end Nathan Overbay from the practice squad.
Best, in his second season out of Cal, has played in all six games this season, rushing 84 times for 390 yards (4.6 yards per carry) and two touchdowns. He also has 27 catches for 287 yards and a score. He has not fumbled.
Best was knocked out of Sunday’s loss against San Francisco.
”He had a hard time with some of the lights after the game,” Schwartz said. ”Those are signs that you’ve got to be concerned about and you have to be objective about. We’ll have a whole protocol that he has to go through to get back on the field.
”Coming back from a concussion isn’t like coming back from a sprained ankle or a bad shoulder or a pulled hamstring. Some of those things you can tough out. You can’t tough out a concussion.”
Best had problems with concussions earlier this year and in college.
Detroit linebacker Justin Durant and tight end Tony Scheffler missed the 49ers game, recovering from concussions of their own, and didn’t practice when reporters were able to watch Wednesday’s practice.
AP Sports Writer Charles Odum in Flowery Branch, Ga., contributed to this report.