The Detroit Lions have a dinged-up offensive line, and with another injury to worry about, depth is becoming a big issue for the team.
On Tuesday, the Lions took a step toward rectifying that a bit, and managed to do so by grabbing a player off another team’s practice squad. Detroit raided the Texas A&M practice squad for offensive lineman Ryan McCollum, who they added to the active roster.
The latest Lions news straight to your inbox! Join the Heavy on Lions newsletter here!
That news was first broken by NFL writer Aaron Wilson. Wilson reported that the Lions had poached McCollum for their team on Tuesday afternoon.
McCollum plays guard or center and has the versatility that teams love on the interior of the line. That was the book on him coming out of college, so it will be interesting to see whether or not the Lions are able to tap into some of the potential that has been mentioned about McCollum early on in his career.
At the very least, he will get a shot to show that he can get the job done and be a key depth piece for the Lions this year after being signed to the team’s active roster.
McCollum’s College Stats and Highlights
An undrafted free agent out of Texas A&M in the 2020 NFL draft, McCollum had quite the career for the Aggies in college. He was a player who appeared in 43 games in college with 24 starts, and was a five time offensive captain for his team. McCollum is also known as a quality teammate. During his junior year in school, McCollum played in eight games and managed to be given the team’s Offensive Unselfish Leadership Award at the A&M football banquet. The move to the Lions is McCollum’s first move north given he is a Spring, Texas native.
Here’s a look at McCollum’s line playing North Carolina in the Orange Bowl in 2020.
Obviously, McCollum’s natural position is center, but it will be interesting to see what the Lions decide to do with him given Evan Brown figures to fill in for Frank Ragnow.
Lions Offensive Line Dealing With Injuries
Detroit’s offensive line was figured to be the strength of their roster this season, but they have dealt with some hardships right away. Taylor Decker has been shelved with a hand injury, and the Lions lost Pro Bowl center Frank Ragnow to a turf toe injury after Week 4. That has forced some bit-part players to come in like Evan Brown and Matt Nelson. Thus far, Detroit’s line has held up given all the uncertainty, and has maintained some decent statistics early on this year. As a whole, the group is young and seems to have tremendous upside when they are able to play together. The hope for Detroit now is that health can come back during the second half of the season, and the team doesn’t have to worry about putting together a mismatched line for the rest of the year.
Adversity might only serve to make the Lions stronger, however, and it could have led them to finding a decent waiver option in McCollum for the future if he is able to earn his keep.