Giorgio Newberry

Lions Release RB Matt Asiata

The Lions have released veteran running back Matt Asiata, the club announced today.

Detroit signed Asiata away from the division rival Vikings in May, inking the 30-year-old to a minimum benefit contract. Always something of a plodder (3.5 yards per carry average for his career), Asiata had a chance to serve as the Lions’ power back if he performed well during the summer. However, Detroit will instead roll with Theo Riddick, Zach Zenner, and Dwayne Washington behind starter Ameer Abdullah.

The Lions also announced the following transactions:

Waived:

Waived/injured:

Lions Waive/Injured Brandon Copeland

The Lions waived/injured linebacker Brandon Copeland on Wednesday. Copeland will either land on the Lions’ injured reserve or head to free agency via an injury settlement if he goes through waivers unclaimed.

Brandon Copeland (Vertical)

Detroit lost the 26-year-old Copeland to a season-ending torn pectoral on Monday, just one day after defensive end Kerry Hyder saw his 2017 conclude prematurely on account of a torn Achilles. Copeland hasn’t been nearly as important to the Lions’ defense as Hyder has, having totaled a mere 13 tackles and one start in two seasons. However, Copeland led the Lions’ special teams unit in snaps in 2016 (305), pacing a group that Football Outsiders ranked No. 6 in the NFL. The year before, he piled up 313 ST snaps – good for third among Lions.

In less notable moves, Detroit signed offensive lineman Connor Bozick, tight end Andrew Price and defensive end Giorgio Newberry. No one from that trio has any NFL experience.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Steelers Trim Roster To 79

The Steelers have placed rookie OT Jerald Hawkins on the reserved/injured list and have waived/injured quarterback Dustin Vaughan, as Ray Fittipaldo of The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports. Per Fittipaldo, the club has also cut the following players:

  • LB Jordan Zumwalt
  • LB Mike Reilly
  • WR Levi Norwood
  • WR Isaac Blakeney
  • TE Michael Cooper
  • DE Giorgio Newberry
  • DT K.K. Mosley-Smith
  • CB Julian Whigham

Zumwalt, the Steelers‘ sixth-round pick in 2014, spent the 2014 and 2015 seasons on injured reserve with a hip injury, and the hip surgery that ended his 2015 campaign before it started took over five hours to complete and included a brutal recovery/rehabilitation period. Zumwalt had been working exclusively at inside linebacker in offseason workouts, but he did not do enough to survive the first round of cuts.

The Steelers now have79 players on their roster and must get down to 75 by Tuesday at 4pm.

Steelers Sign 10 UDFAs

The Steelers announced that they’ve agreed to terms with 10 undrafted rookie free agents. One UDFA — tight end Jay Rome — was also announced as part of the Chargers’ UDFA class, so there’s obviously been some confusion on the part of either Pittsburgh or San Diego. We’ll include Rome here for now, but he might end up wearing blue and gold.