Lions T Jeff Backus ends streak of 186 consecutive games played

Backus hasn’t missed a game since he was a redshirt freshman at Michigan. (US Presswire)

The list of inactive players for Thursday’s Texans-Lions showdown is out and much of the attention has been placed on cornerback Johnathan Joseph and how much Houston will miss him while trying to defend Detroit receiver Calvin Johnson.

But the loss of Lions left tackle Jeff Backus is historically more significant.

His streak of 186 consecutive starts will end because of the hamstring injury he suffered last week. He’ll be replaced in the starting lineup by first-round pick Riley Reiff.

Backus’ consistency and his ability to stay in the lineup is remarkable for any player, but especially for an offensive lineman who gets hit on every play. He was the No. 18 overall pick in the 2001 draft, and ever since the Lions called his name on draft day he’s never left the lineup.

Amazingly, Backus also started 49 consecutive games while at Michigan, so in reality, today’s absence will be his first in 236 games.

Since 1970, Backus and Peyton Manning are the only NFL players to start at least the first 180 games of their careers (Manning's streak ended at 208).

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