Lions Rumors

NFL Practice Squad Updates: 9/25/21

Here are today’s practice squad decisions:

Baltimore Ravens

  • Signed: RB Nate McCrary

Denver Broncos

Detroit Lions

New England Patriots

Seattle Seahawks

  • Released: TE Michael Jacobson

Minor NFL Transactions: 9/25/21

The weekly Saturday bunch of minor moves:

Atlanta Falcons

  • Promoted: WR Juwan Green

Baltimore Ravens

Chicago Bears

Cincinnati Bengals

Cleveland Browns

Detroit Lions

Indianapolis Colts

Jacksonville Jaguars

Las Vegas Raiders

Los Angeles Chargers

Los Angeles Rams

Minnesota Vikings

New England Patriots

New York Giants

New York Jets

San Francisco 49ers

Seattle Seahawks

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Tennessee Titans

Lions Place Tyrell Williams On IR

The Lions have placed wide receiver Tyrell Williams on the injured reserve list, per a club announcement. His roster spot will be filled by linebacker Josh Woods, who has been signed from the Bears’ practice squad. 

Williams has been in concussion protocol ever since Week 1, when he absorbed a hard tackle from 49ers safety Jaquiski Tartt. Doctors held Williams out of last week’s game against the Lions and he’ll continue to sit out for several more games. At minimum, Williams will miss this week’s game against the Ravens, next week’s tilt against the Bears, and the Week 5 game against the Vikings.

Williams reunited with Anthony Lynn this year, agreeing to a one-year deal that could be worth as much as $6.2MM. The Lions were hoping to have a healthy Williams front and center in their offense with Kenny Golladay and Marvin Jones out of the picture. Instead, the 29-year-old will have to spend the early part of the season focusing on his health. In his lone Lions game, Williams notched two grabs for 14 yards.

His most productive season to date came under Mike McCoy — a 1,000-yard 2016 slate — but he remained an auxiliary Chargers cog under Lynn from 2017-18. Still, Williams totaled more than 1,300 yards and nine touchdowns between those seasons.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Latest On Lions’ Jamie Collins

On Thursday, Lions head coach Dan Campbell confirmed that the team is indeed shopping linebacker Jamie Collins (Twitter link via Chris Burke of The Athletic). Campbell also says the veteran will be away from the team as they explore trade possibilities.

Signed during the Lions’ Bob QuinnMatt Patricia regime, Collins is set to earn in $3.8MM base salary this season. He’s also under contract through 2022, the final year of his three-year, $30MM deal pact. Collins’ base salary — reduced via restructuring earlier this year — should be manageable for interested teams. The Lions, meanwhile, would take on $11MM+ in dead money by dealing Collins.

The Lions are looking to deploy rookie Derrick Barnes in Collins’ place. He hasn’t seen a ton of significant action yet, but the Lions are eager to shake things up after their 0-2 start.

Collins, 32 in October, has been here before — the Patriots traded him to the Browns midway through the 2016 season. He returned to the Pats in 2019 and enjoyed a bounce-back season before hooking on with Detroit. He went on to notch his fourth 100-plus-tackle slate last year (101 stops) while forcing three fumbles. Still, he’s too old to be a part of the Lions’ rebuild.

Through two games, Pro Football Focus has Collins ranked No. 24 among the league’s off-ball linebackers.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Minor NFL Transactions: 9/23/21

We’ll keep track of today’s minor moves here:

Denver Broncos

Detroit Lions

Miami Dolphins

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Lions Shopping LB Jamie Collins

The new Lions regime is looking to trade Jamie Collins. The team has taken calls on the veteran linebacker, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (Twitter link), and intends to use younger players on its defensive second level the rest of the way.

Signed during the Lions’ Bob QuinnMatt Patricia regime, Collins is attached to just a $3.8MM base salary this season and is under contract through 2022. The Lions gave Collins a three-year, $30MM deal in 2020 and restructured it in March. This reworking figures to make Collins a bit more appealing on the market.

The Lions held Collins out of practice today, Adam Schefter of ESPN.com tweets, providing a potential indication a move could happen soon. They would take in more than $11MM in dead money by trading Collins.

Collins, 32 in October, is familiar with the trade block. The Patriots dealt him to the Browns ahead of the 2016 deadline. Collins played in Cleveland through the 2018 season before re-signing with the Pats during the ’19 offseason. His bounce-back season with New England led to another big-ticket contract.

Detroit has used Collins as a starter in each of its first two games, but the team has begun a rebuild and would stand to benefit from giving younger talents more time. After his strong 2019 season, Collins notched his fourth 100-plus-tackle slate in 2020 by registering 101. He also forced three fumbles last year.

The Lions shifted to a 3-4 look this year, moving Collins to an inside role. They also signed Alex Anzalone, who joined new DC Aaron Glenn in coming north from New Orleans, and drafted Derrick Barnes in the fourth round. A Collins trade would open the door for more Barnes playing time. Through two games, Pro Football Focus slots Collins 24th among off-ball linebackers. A contender in need at the position could certainly do worse. This year’s trade deadline is Nov. 2.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Minor NFL Transactions: 9/22/21

We’ll keep track of today’s minor moves here:

Dallas Cowboys

  • Placed on reserve/COVID-19 list: LB Keanu Neal; as a high-risk close contact, per The Athletic’s Jon Machota (on Twitter), Neal can return after a five-day isolation period

Denver Broncos

Detroit Lions

Houston Texans

Las Vegas Raiders

Minnesota Vikings

Tennessee Titans

Lions Place Ifeatu Melifonwu On IR

The Lions have placed cornerback Ifeatu Melifonwu on the injured reserve list (Twitter link via NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport). To take his place, they’ve promoted fellow corner Daryl Worley from the practice squad to the active roster. 

Melifonwu will need at least a few weeks to recover from the thigh injury he suffered on Monday night. Lions head coach Dan Campbell isn’t exactly sure when he’ll return, but he did tell reporters that the rookie will be out for a “significant amount of time.” It’s a bad blow for Detroit — the third-rounder out of Syracuse was enjoying a strong start to his pro career. He notched a fumble recovery in his Week 1 debut and earned a start in Week 2 against the Packers.

Of course, the Lions were already without Jeff Okudah, who has been ruled out for the season. Amani Oruwariye will remain the starter at one of the cornerback spots, likely with help from former undrafted safety Bobby Price.

Worley should factor into the banged-up secondary as well, especially since he has 54 career starts to his credit. Still only 26, Worley’s resume includes five interceptions and 37 passes defensed.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Lions CB Ifeatu Melifonwu To Miss “Significant Amount Of Time”

A key Lions rookie will be sidelined for the foreseeable future. Cornerback Ifeatu Melifonwu suffered a significant thigh injury during Monday’s loss to the Packers, reports Tim Twentyman of the team’s website (via Twitter).

Lions head coach Dan Campbell told reporters that Melifonwu will be out of the lineup for a “significant amount of time,” and the rookie is expected to need at least a few weeks to recover. The injury occurred in the second half of last night’s contest, with Melifonwu suffering the injury on a 50-yard grab by Davante Adams.

Following a standout career at Syracuse, Melifonwu was selected in the third round of this past year’s draft. The 6-foot-3 defensive back had a fumble recovery during his NFL debut in Week 1, and he ended up earning his first career start in Week 2. The 22-year-old saw time on 30 defensive snaps last night, collecting a pair of tackles and defending one pass.

The Lions were already scrambling for cornerback depth; Melifonwu only got the start because Jeff Okudah suffered a season-ending injury. Amani Oruwariye remains the starter at one of the cornerback spots, with former undrafted safety Bobby Price appearing to be the next man in line.

Minor NFL Transactions: 9/16/21

We’ll keep track of today’s minor moves here:

Baltimore Ravens

Detroit Lions

Houston Texans

New York Giants

New York Jets