Alex Carder

Lions Notes: Orlovsky, Washington, Carter

Well-traveled backup quarterback Dan Orlovsky re-signed with the Lions this offseason after spending 2015 as the team’s No. 2 signal-caller behind Matthew Stafford. However, the Lions drafted Michigan’s Jake Rudock in the sixth round of this year’s draft–the first time Detroit has drafted a QB since selecting Stafford himself in 2009–and that selection immediately put Orlovsky’s job in jeopardy. After all, new GM Bob Quinn was raised in a Patriots system that typically keeps just two quarterbacks, and rarely has the backup been a veteran.

But Dave Birkett of The Detroit Free Press writes that both head coach Jim Caldwell and OC Jim Bob Cooter sang Orlovsky’s praises after the conclusion of OTAs on Thursday, and as Rudock is a fairly raw prospect, the Lions may wind up keeping three quarterbacks in 2016, or even trying to stash Rudock on the practice squad. In any event, it is far too early to count Orlovsky out of the picture.

Now for more from the Motor City:

  • Detroit selected running back Dwayne Washington in the seventh round of this year’s draft, but because NFL policy prohibits college players from practicing with their new teams until their academic year is over, Washington’s first OTA practice on Thursday was the team’s last OTA practice, which puts him at a major disadvantage. However, as Tim Twentyman of writes, Washington’s speed was on full display on Thursday, and Washington himself indicated that the practice went as well as could be expected.
  • Speaking of Washington, Michael Rothstein of says the former University of Washington Husky could insert himself into the team’s running back equation, but if he had to handicap the RB race right now, Rothstein believes Ameer Abdullah, Theo Riddick, Stevan Ridley, and Zach Zenner would make the club (although Ridley’s and Zenner’s spots are certainly up for grabs).
  • In the same piece, Rothstein says Alex Carter, last year’s third-round selection, is expected to be a significant part of the Lions’ cornerback rotation. Carter suffered an ankle injury during the early stages of training camp last season and did not play a single snap for Detroit, but Rothstein pegs him as the team’s No. 4 corner behind Darius Slay, Quandre Diggs, and Nevin Lawson.
  • We learned several days ago that Stephen Tulloch is still unsure as to whether he will be on the team in 2016, and we also learned that the Lions waived wideout Corey Washington with an injury designation.

North Rumors: Bradford, Browns, Johnson

Earlier today, Eagles coach Chip Kelly told reporters that he got offered a first-round pick for newly-acquired quarterback Sam Bradford. Speculation immediately began to bubble that the Browns were that mystery team, but Jeremy Fowler of isn’t so sure that Cleveland’s talks with the Rams went very far. One source with knowledge of the Browns’ offseason quarterback plans said St. Louis never felt Cleveland was serious about a Bradford trade. While there were few calls back and forth, there was never much of a push because the Browns weren’t overly aggressive. There was correspondence, but the Browns probably could have had Bradford if they were willing to part with at least one second-round pick for him. Here’s more from the AFC and NFC North..

  • A source close to defensive end Michael Johnson said it’s early in the process but there’s a good chance the Vikings will be in the running him, according to Chris Tomasson of the Pioneer Press. “Mike Zimmer’s his guy,’’ said the source, referring to the Vikings coach. “He almost went (to Minnesota) last year.’’ Johnson was waived by the Bucs on Wednesday afternoon.
  • New Lions defensive tackle Haloti Ngata says he’s open to an extension, Michael Rothstein of tweets. “Definitely. We’re open to anything,” Ngata said. The Ravens were talking with the veteran for some time about an extension but weren’t able to get far.
  • Bears GM Ryan Pace made it clear that he is looking at safeties and wide receivers in free agency, but he refused to name names, Adam Jahns of the Chicago Sun-Times tweets.
  • The Lions are hosting quarterback Alex Carder on a visit today, Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press tweets. Carder was signed as a UDFA in 2013 by Detroit and has bounced around a bit in other football leagues ever since. He recently spent some time with the Ottawa Redblacks of the Canadian Football League.