Quarterback, Veteran Defender Lions’ Top Training Camp Cut Candidates

Michael Brockers

Getty Michael Brockers on the field against the Vikings in 2021.

Training camp is fast approaching for the Detroit Lions, and the period is a key proving ground for players looking to make a major roster impression before the season.

Jobs are won and lost during this time, and several players are on the bubble in terms of their own futures. Most players will need a big camp in order to ensure roles for the coming season, but the pressure is on a few names more than others at this point in time.

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Which players will be facing the most pressure this year and could be the biggest cut candidates? Here’s a look at some of the names to remember.

Austin Bryant, Edge

Pass rush has been a problem for the Lions, but suddenly, the team is starting to look improved at the spot. Bryant was one of the top players from the team in 2022, but is there room for him now? Picked in the fourth-round of the 2019 draft, the pass rusher out of Clemson got hyped as a possible hidden-gem thanks to his college production, but injuries have slowed his NFL output early in his career. Still, Bryant cam make an impact:

Statistically, Bryant has been quiet, putting up just 25 total tackles in the NFL prior to last season. In 2021, he managed to top that with 31 tackles and 4.5 sacks. Health played a role in his resurgence. Can the Lions count on Bryant to deliver again? With names like Aidan Hutchinson, Charles Harris, Romeo Okwara and Julian Okwara in the mix, will there be room for him? Bryant will have to earn it, as he might already be a marked man.

Tim Boyle, Quarterback

Detroit has kept three quarterbacks in the past, but Boyle could be in jeopardy of losing his job this season as Detroit’s roster gets more competitive. In college, throwing for 3,371 yards, 12 touchdowns and 26 interceptions. He played at UConn before transferring to Eastern Kentucky. Boyle played for the last three seasons in Green Bay in mostly mop-up duty before coming to Detroit. Last year, he threw 3 touchdowns to 6 interceptions while playing for the Lions.

Boyle had a few good moments last season, namely this touchdown pass against Atlanta:

Boyle has shown an ability to make throws and lead confidently, but camp and the preseason could be critical for him this year. He could need to have a very consistent summer in order to ensure he is not on the chopping block. David Blough could be on his heels, and the Lions could want to keep an extra roster spot open.

Garrett Griffin, Tight End

The Lions already employ an elite tight end in T.J. Hockenson by most league metrics, and this offseason, the team added an interesting player in Devin Funchess, who’s been productive in his career. Additionally, the team has a player that could be making a push toward stardom in Brock Wright after his solid finish to 2021. Griffin is more of a blocker and has not been productive catching passes in his career with only 43 total yards to his credit and 1 receiving touchdown in the playoffs, so the pressure is on him to show something as it relates to catching the football.

This offseason, Griffin only signed for one-year deal worth $965,000, so it’s not as if the Lions would be risking much giving up on him. Griffin will have to earn his job with the Lions even though he was one of the team’s early free agency moves.

Logan Stenberg, Guard

Detroit has depth along the offensive line, and as a result, Stenberg might be one of the more forgotten players. Names like Tommy Kraemer and Evan Brown may have upstaged Stenberg last season, so he will have plenty to prove to the roster once the team gets back together and on the field. Stenberg has a gritty reputation on the field, but hasn’t been able to crack the rotation. There’s a lot of competition at guard, so will Stenberg be the first to go or will he find a role outside of a reserve spot in 2022? It could be a vital camp for Stenberg with the Lions.

Michael Brockers, Defensive Line

The Lions have solidified their defensive front the last few offseasons, and with players like Alim McNeill, Josh Paschal and Levi Onwuzurike coming into the fold up front. Others like Jashon Cornell have raised eyes at times. Brockers has been a key veteran for the team, but there is question as to whether or not he might be edged out by some younger players. During the 2021-22 season, Brockers put up 52 tackles and 1 sack for the team. His leadership, though, always seemed like the most important variable for a Lions team trying to change their entire culture. That continues to shine through for Brockers, and could be his major calling card as it relates to keeping a role.

Brockers might be edged out by some of the younger players on the field in terms of production, and as a result, he could become a valuable trade chip for the Lions prior to the end of camp.

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