Lions’ First 2022 Roster Cuts Include Pair of Local Talents: Report

Kalil Pimpleton

Getty Kalil Pimpleton shakes hands with Amon-Ra St. Brown in Lions camp.

The Detroit Lions have some tough decisions to make in the next 24 hours, and the team has already started to trim their roster according to reports.

This year, the first players to be exiting the team both have Michigan ties. Doug Kyed of The Athletic revealed that the Lions would be cutting Kalil Pimpleton from the roster.

“The Lions are waiving speedy Hard Knocks star WR Kalil Pimpleton, per a source. He’s a practice squad candidate,” Kyed tweeted.

In addition to Pimpleton, a veteran player is also packing his bags. Per Jordan Schultz, the Lions are also releasing former Michigan tight end Devin Funchess.

“Devin Funchess is being released by the #Lions, per source. The talented former Michigan standout flashed in Week 1 of the preseason with four catches and a TD,” Schultz tweeted.

Also moving on according to Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press? Reserve offensive tackle Kendall Lamm.

“Lions are cutting OT Kendall Lamm. Late camp addition. Imagine he finds work in the NFL with a tackle-needy team at some point this season,” Birkett tweeted.

Lamm joined camp as a signing by Detroit, but with the move to cut him, the Lions may have decided they like one of their incumbent swing tackles such as Matt Nelson.

Both of the skill position cuts represent a few of the tougher choices the Lions had. Pimpleton had flashed during the preseason and was playing a role on special teams as well. Funchess himself was very productive in the first preseason game with a touchdown catch, and felt like he had taken a step toward making the roster.

If Pimpleton hangs around on the market, there’s a good chance the Lions bring him back. Funchess, however, may not get that opportunity depending on what else happens.

These are merely the first round of cuts for the Lions, so stay tuned to see what else Brad Holmes and Dan Campbell have up their sleeves.

Pimpleton’s College Stats & Highlights

A few months back, it was surprising to see Pimpleton not get drafted, as he was easily one of the more productive wideouts in the MAC during his three-year career at Central Michigan.

The Muskegon, Michigan native seemed worth a late flier pick for a team, but the Lions took advantage and scooped him up. Armed with size as well as excellent and sticky hands, Pimpleton makes life miserable on defensive backs as he often showed in college to the tune of 2,131 yards and 12 touchdowns. Here’s some highlights:

Pimpleton would much rather have been competing last year in Lions camp given the lack of explosive wideouts, but he will have a fair chance to come back and perhaps crack the Detroit practice squad if he goes unclaimed on waivers.

Funchess’s Career Stats & Highlights

A former second-round pick of the Carolina Panthers in 2015 out of Michigan, Funchess stayed with the Panthers until 2018 and made a big early impact in the league.

In 2019, Funchess signed with the Indianapolis Colts, and he then joined the Green Bay Packers in 2020. In 2021, he was an offseason member of the San Francisco 49ers before landing his deal in Detroit earlier this offseason.

Statistically, Funchess has been up and down with 2,265 yards and 21 touchdowns in his career in the NFL. Here’s a look at some of his highlights thus far in the league:

Funchess will have a good chance to perhaps catch on somewhere else now. He impressed in Week 1 of the preseason, and might have a shot to land a role with a team that needs a pass catcher.

Though he won’t be making his hometown team, Funchess has some decent NFL tape and is just 28 years of age.

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