The Detroit Lions have put the finishing touches on their 2020 NFL Draft class, and now that the picking is complete, the team will set their sights on picking up a few undrafted free agents to add to the mix.
In the draft, the Lions were able to land Jeff Okudah, D’Andre Swift, Julian Okwara, Jonah Jackson, Logan Stenberg, Quintez Cephus, Jason Huntley, John Penisini and Jashon Cornell.
As the names come in, what players will be joining them as undrafted free agents? Here’s a complete look:
Bryant was one of the best players on the board as the draft finished at tight end, while Wirtel is a snapper and will be depth to compete with Don Muhlbach. Elliott is an athletic safety from Notre Dame. Sellers is a versatile weapon on offense that plays a bit of wideout and running back. Siposs is a punter out of Auburn. Edwards is a pass rusher from Ferris State. Dinson is a defensive back from Auburn. Stay tuned for other signings as they stream in.
Lions 2020 UDFA Approach Might Look Different
Speaking recently, Detroit Lions general manager Bob Quinn was asked about the impact on the potentially shortened offseason, and as he explained, it’s possible the team will not be adding as many undrafted free agents as they normally do. Quinn admitted that the team might only sign a handful of undrafted free agents. That would be down from the usual 10-15 players the team looks to sign.
NFL.com analyst Bucky Brooks saw this, and admittedly had a strong opinion, saying that it would be a mistake for the team and their management to take this approach.
It will be interesting to see if others take Quinn’s approach, given the fact the NFL offseason figures to be truncated. Teams won’t be likely to be able to have actual practices with their rookies right off the bat thanks to the uncertainty created by the coronavirus, and might find complete analysis of players tougher. Still, it’s easy to see Brooks’ point. Regardless of whether the players make the team in the end, the Lions might be wise to get a closer look at those players to see what they’ve got.
Saturday after the draft, everyone will simply have to see what happens from the Detroit perspective. No matter the size of the class, whomever the Lions pick up will have a chance to make an impression on the team.
Lions Best Undrafted Free Agent Signings
Through the years, the Lions have not been shy about signing undrafted free agents to the roster, and plenty of those players have gone on to solid careers in Detroit. Names such as James Hall, LaAdrian Waddle, Zach Zenner, Joseph Fauria and Kellen Moore have all gone on to make the team. Last season, Beau Benzschawel, C.J. Moore and Kevin Strong all made the team. The UDFA market has typically helped the Lions fill out their team with depth and provided several difference makers through the years. Some stick on the team’s practice squad and help with the week to week preparation and crack the roster at other times.
Detroit’s 2020 class might be smaller in scope, but even if it is, the team will have a chance to score some important players for their roster moving forward. So far, these players are the ones to be entering the mix for the team this year.