2023 Detroit Lions Final 53-Man Roster Prediction: Eric Schlitt Edition

The Detroit Lions have completed pre-season and are now required to whittle their roster down to 53 players by the Tuesday, August 29th deadline at 4 p.m. ET.

Throughout the vacation, Jeremy Reisman (Eric Schlitt) and I teamed up on several 53-man co-projects, but for the final installment, we ventured out on our own (you can find Jeremy here).

Without further ado, my list of 53 players for the 2023 Lions:

Note: the asterisk

Indicates that the player is a beginner.

Quarterback (2)
Jared Goff
Teddy Bridgewater
Nate Sudfeld

Adrian Martinez* List of non-food items:

Hendon Hooker*

There has been some speculation as to whether or not the Lions will keep a third quarterback on the active roster, but I thought Teddy Bridgewater looked stable through Game 3 and I’m not convinced Nate Sudfeld has done enough to justify it at this point in time. While black suggested New emergency rule for the midfielder

Allowing teams to recruit an extra quarterback on game day, coach Dan Campbell shot down the idea that this might influence decision-making on cuts, saying, “I don’t think that’s a factor in what we’re going to do with a roster.”

There is a report that the Lions are planning to activate rookie Hendon Hooker once he’s medically cleared, so, they might add a third quarterback at some point, but I guess that won’t happen at this time.

running backwards (4)
David Montgomery
J. Gibbs*
Jason Cabinda (FB)
Craig Reynolds
Germar Jefferson
Devin Ozyigbo

Penny Snell

Actor: Mohamed Ibrahim*

For the second week in a row, the Lions used just one player in the first half: Craig Reynolds. His performance against the Panthers should end any discussion that he’s the team’s RB3 forward. Jemar Jefferson would probably be his closest competitor, but another camp injury put him out of the race. Benny Snell could be the RB4’s sleeper, especially if roster building leaves them lacking a bigger body on special teams.

wide receiver (6)
Amon Ra Brown Street
Josh Reynolds
Calif Raymond
Marvin Jones
Dylan Drummond*
Antoine Green*
Chase Cotta*
Trinity Benson
Maurice Alexander
Avery Davis*

Jason Moore Outstanding list:

Jameson Williams

The rookies took this competition to an end, and in the end, Green and Drummond pulled ahead and captured the final two spots at receiver. Drummond has been one of the most consistent receivers on the roster throughout camp, while Green has shown his superior speed and position flexibility on special teams against the Panthers.

narrow end (3)
Brooke Wright
Sam Laporta*
James Mitchell
Daryl Daniels

Daniel Helm

IR: Shane Zelstra

This stance group was set in stone the moment Zylstra fell due to injury early in camp. Daniels was somewhat of a dark horse candidate for the TE4 role, given his tight relationship with coach Steve Hayden, but I didn’t see enough of him to justify a spot.

offensive line (9)
Taylor Decker
Jonah Jackson
Frank Ragno
Halapolivati ​​Vaitai
Penny Sewell
Graham Glasgow
Colby Sursdale*
Matt Nelson
German Evidy
Kayode Oseka
Bobby Hart
Darren Paolo
Obina Ease
Brad Cecil*
Alex Mullett
Max Bircher
Connor Galvin*

Ryan Swoboda*

The Lions’ seven best offensive linemen looked ready, but deciding on OT3 and OL8/9 was tough. I was inclined to leave this group at the age of eight, but there was also no clear choice about the attack that forced this outcome. In the end, Evedi is a veteran who can be counted on, and Nelson has a proven track record of six sets of offensive linemen. I would have been inclined to include Oseka here, but the Lions have consistently shown a preference for more tackles during this training camp.

internal defense line (5)
Alim MacNeil
Isaiah Baggs
Levi Onuzoriki
Benito Jones
Broderick Martin*
Christian Covington
Corey Durden*

Chris Smith*

This was one of the hardest decisions I had to make, and in the end, I went with five inside linebackers for two main reasons: 1) while Levi Onozoriki looked great, he’s still in the recovery process so it’s hard to trust in this moment; and 2) Broderick Martin didn’t shine as much in matches as he did early in camp, suggesting he’s still in an early stage of development. With two players in this group who are too good to cut, but still recover/evolve as well, the Lions need three players they can count on to give them consistent shots.

Edge (6)
Aidan Hutchinson
Charles Harris
John Kominsky
Josh Paschal
James Houston
Romeo Okwara

Julian Okwara

I tried to find a way to justify including seven rushers in my offer, but at the end of the day Julian Okwara was very inconsistent throughout camp and seemed to have an injury against the Panthers. Of all the bubble players, he has to have the highest commercial value and I fully expect to see General Manager Brad Holmes shopping with him over the next few days.

full back (5)
Alex Anzalone
Jack Campbell*
Malcolm Rodriguez
Derek Barnes
Jalen Reeves Maybin
Anthony Bateman

Trevor Nowaski*

What to do with Anthony Bateman has been a weekly thorn in the decision-making process. He’s a dynamic player on special teams but also clearly an LB6 on a no-points list on defense. Retaining an extra defensive lineman costs Pittman his place here, but I wouldn’t be surprised if he gets the same opportunities he had last season: sign up for the coaching staff, upgrade each of the first three games, and sign to the 53-man roster as soon as injury strikes.

Rear Corner (6)*

* = Can go up to 7 after initial cuts
Cameron Sutton
Jerry Jacobs
Bryan Branch* (Note/South)
Will Harris (NB/CB)
Starling Thomas*
Chase Lucas (NB/CB)
Stephen Gilmour*
Khalil Dorsey

Colby Richardson

Puppy: Emmanuel Moseley

Safety (4)*

* = Can go down to 3 after initial cuts
CJ Gardner Johnson (S/NB)
Kirby Joseph
Tracy Walker
Iveto Melfono
Brandon Joseph*
Brady Breeze

Scott Nelson

I’ve thrown an asterisk on these two groups because I expect the Lions to try to bring Ifeatu Melifonwu – who had a strong camp – through the initial cuts, then put him on injured reserve, opening up another spot on the roster. Since the rules surrounding injured reserve change from the vacation period (where a player placed in the IR finishes their season) to the regular season (where a player can return during the season), I would expect they might try to move Melifonwu to a place where he can return later in the year .

If Melifonwu ends up in IR, the player I would expect to bring back is Stephen Gilmour, who was my last man in this drill. Gilmour has a good sense of the ball and is just starting to discover his potential.

This black scenario might put him in a bit of a quandary in terms of safety depth, but it should be noted that Brian Branch and Will Harris are experienced safeties and have been giving Chase Lucas some safety reps every once in a while as a way to expand his game. Additionally, look for the Lions to try and keep several of the coaching staff’s safety points – namely Brandon Joseph and Brady Breeze – while Melivono recovers, giving them more security in the center.

I also think a player like Khalil Dorsey should join the training squad, he could potentially be called up during the season – either as an injury replacement or via a match-up – and could be used as soon as Week 1 against the Chiefs.

Special Teams (3)
jack fox (q)
Scott Daly (LS)
Riley Patterson (k)

Parker Romo (k)

The entire Lions camp seems to be leaning towards Patterson as their primary kicker, while Parker Romo hasn’t played in either of the last two preseason games. Even though Patterson lost twice at Carolina – with a 53-yard field goal and an extra point – he still looked to be in a strong place. “I feel like he (Paterson) has been fairly consistent and reliable, and I think he was in a difficult state today.” Campbell told Tim Twentyman Detroit

After the Panthers match. “That’s what I’m referring to because he was really involved in this training camp.”

All indications are that this is Patterson’s job.

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