Chris McCosky/ The Detroit News
Allen Park — Lions fever may be at an all-time high.
About 500 fans showed up at the Ford Field box office — some as early as 5 a.m. Wednesday — to lay their claim to individual Lions game tickets. They sold out the Monday night game Oct. 10 against the Bears in about 45 minutes.
“And other tickets are moving fast, too,” said Lions president Tom Lewand. “For the Thanksgiving Day game (against the Packers) there were just a few left.”
Lewand said he was blown away by the box office turnout.
“That’s surprising to us that in this day and age of the Internet and toll-free calls, people still came out to the box office,” he said.
The Lions have also sold out Saturday’s exhibition game against the New England Patriots; it will be shown live locally on CBS.
“People are voting with their pocket books and making an investment in us,” Lewand said. “And that is an investment we have to honor and respect. It is up to us now to deliver a return on that investment.”
Ron Olkowski, 50, drove more than an hour from Richmond to buy a few pairs of tickets for him and his 16-year-old son, who plays football for Romeo High. The father was in line outside Ford Field by 8:30 a.m.
“True fans come out here,” he said. “Anyone can sit at their computer, drink coffee and click a button.”
Olkowski had a half-season ticket plan last year, but chose to buy single-game tickets this year because the package didn’t include either of this season’s premium games — the Monday night game against the Bears or the Thanksgiving game against the Packers. Last season his half-season package included the Thanksgiving game against the Patriots.
On Wednesday he waited more than two hours to buy tickets against the Chiefs (Sept. 18, home opener), 49ers (Oct. 16) and Vikings (Dec. 11). And as he walked away from the ticket booth, he asked, “These are all guaranteed victories, right?”
On the field
On the practice field Wednesday, running back Jahvid Best returned to practice, though the team is in shorts. He has been cleared of any post-concussion symptoms.
Defensive end Kyle Vanden Bosch (shoulder) is not practicing.
Both Best and Vanden Bosch won’t play against the Patriots.
Sun., Sept 11 — at Tampa Bay, 1
Sun., Sept. 18 — Kansas City, 1
Sun., Sept. 25 — at Minnesota, 1
Sun., Oct. 2 — at Dallas, 1
Mon., Oct. 10 — Chicago, 8:30
Sun., Oct. 16 — San Francisco, 1
Sun., Oct. 23 — Atlanta, 1
Sun., Oct. 30 — at Denver, 4
Sun., Nov. 13 — at Chicago, 1
Sun., Nov. 20 — Carolina, 1
Thu., Nov. 24 — Green Bay, 12:30
Sun., Dec. 4 — at New Orleans, 1
Sun., Dec. 11 — Minnesota, 1
Sun., Dec. 18 — at Oakland, 4
Sat., Dec. 24 — San Diego, 4
Sun., Jan. 1 — at Green Bay, 1
Josh Katzenstein contributed to this report.