Did you ever have a time at recess when two people were picking teams and you kept standing there waiting, hoping to hear your name called so you weren’t last to be chosen? Today is that day for all of the NFL teams. The 75 man rosters need to be trimmed to 53 players by 9 pm tonight. There are some players for the Detroit Lions who might not care if they are chosen last, just as long as they are chosen.
Who is sitting on the bubble for the Lions today and hoping to make the cut?
Ryan Donahue. There has been a battle for the punting position between Donahue and Ben Graham. Through the first three preseason games and practices the two were virtually equal in kick distances. The only difference is that Donahue is younger and therefore might have been a better choice. However, Graham had a great game against the Buffalo Bills last night and might have earned the spot. He booted a 49 yard kick with less than two minutes left that pushed the Bills down to the 20 yard line to start their drive. His average was 45.3 yards for the night while Donahue was just 33.5 yards.
Kellen Moore. Knowing if you are chosen for a team and won’t get better than a third starting spot might be a bit depressing. That’s where Moore finds himself, despite having a decent game against the Bills. He threw 17/30 with 211 yards, but is a third string quarterback necessary? As long as Matthew Stafford can stay healthy, he has the starting spot locked, and Shaun Hill is secure at second. Moore would only get playing time if there was an injury with both, and then it would just be a catastrophe for the Lions all the way around.
Kevin Barnes. This man shows up in town less than a week ago and is put in the game as a safety – he typically plays the corner spot – because of injuries. Louis Delmas is out with a knee injury, then during the Bills game Ricardo Silva and Reshard Langford BOTH got hurt. The good news for Barnes is that he played the position well, as did Alphonso Smith who was put in the other safety position.
Everette Brown. The defensive end played well and looked good through the preseason. And everyone knows that Detroit is struggling with the defense side of the ball a bit due to injuries. Brown might make the team, but it will depend on how some of the other positions end up in regards to the number of players kept.
Doug Hogue. Hogue had a fairly good preseason showing, but he might get trapped in a numbers game, just like Brown. If he is released, then another team will surely snap him up.
Other players that will probably be sent to the reserves or waivers list include: Patrick Edwards, Rodney Austin, Maurice Stovall and Pat Boyle. Nate Hughes and Lance Long probably won’t make it though as receivers, simply because there are some stronger contenders ahead of them. Can you say, Calvin Johnson?
Stay tuned…we’ll all know later who does make the cut!