Ability and availability. It’s the mantra of the NFL. Mikel Leshoure knows this.

An Achilles tendon scuttled the running back’s first season. In 2012, groin and hamstring problems hampered his second season and led to uneven performances.

“You know, I think at times last year we saw the Leshoure that we drafted and then we were too inconsistent in other games and I think that’s probably the biggest thing,” coach Jim Schwartz said. “I think his biggest room for improvement is consistency from week to week, whether it’s physical or else wise.”

Leshoure is on the mend and wants to prove he can be consistently effective and, of course, available.

“I’ve just got to get healthy,” he said. “Last year I was just dealing with a lot of things, nagging injuries weren’t where they needed to be coming off the first year of my injuries. I’ve just got to get healthy and consistency will come when you’re healthy.”

It’s early, but so far, so good. The Lions have been managing Leshoure’s practice time this off-season, but he took part fully in minicamp last week.

Leshoure also has been patient with his status. He’s halfway through his first contract and doesn’t have much to show for it. But Leshoure knows where he stands and hasn’t avoided questions, which usually is a good sign of a young player’s outlook.