Lions installing new surface at Ford Field

This Ford Field turf is history. The Lions are replacing it with a softer, more durable surface. (US Presswire)

The Lions aren’t switching to natural grass, as free-agent defensive end Cliff Avril and other players would prefer, but they are replacing their artificial surface for the first time since Ford Field opened in 2002.

The Lions said they’ve begun replacing the FieldTurf surface with FieldTurf Classic HD, touted as softer and more durable. Installation will be done in a month.

Sixteen NFL teams play home games on grass, and two others -- Broncos and Packers -- use a blend of natural and synthetic called DD Grassmaster.

FieldTurf is the most popular artificial surface. Seven teams -- Detroit, New England, Atlanta, Indianapolis, Seattle, Jets and Giants -- play home games on it. Twenty-two teams practice on it.

Don’t count Avril as a fan.

"As far as what I would prefer, I definitely wouldn't mind playing on grass because playing on turf puts the joints in a bad situation after a few years,” he told

But other players, such as Bears linebacker Brian Urlacher, are big supporters of FieldTurf.

For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnNFL on Twitter, subscribe to our RSS Feed, watch Pro Football 360 daily at 3 p.m. ET and NFL newsletter. You can also follow Larry Hartstein @LarryHartstein.

Show Comments Hide Comments
Our Latest Stories
    CBS Sports Shop