Lions Finalize 53-Man Roster
By Ashley Dunkak
CBS DETROIT – The Detroit Lions have their roster.
In the weeks leading up to final cuts, Lions head coach Jim Caldwell frequently fielded questions about whether the team would carry a third quarterback.
For now, the answer is yes, according to the roster released on the Lions website.
During the offseason, Detroit brought in Dan Orlovsky to be the primary backup to Matthew Stafford, but while Orlovsky looked marginal at best in preseason games, third quarterback Kellen Moore seemed to shine when he got opportunities.
While Moore did not get many chances in Detroit’s second and third preseason games, he completed 11 of 13 passes for 121 yards and a touchdown in the team’s preseason debut, and Friday he connected on 17 of 28 passes for 172 yards and two touchdowns.
Moore has never played in an NFL regular season game; Orlovsky has played in 21.
At running back, the Lions kept Theo Riddick, Montell Owens and Jed Collins along with Reggie Bush and Joique Bell.
At wide receiver, the Lions retained Calvin Johnson, Golden Tate, Kevin Ogletree, Jeremy Ross, Ryan Broyles and Corey Fuller. The tight end group turned out exactly as expected – veteran Brandon Pettigrew, second-year player Joseph Fauria and first-round draft pick Eric Ebron.
Detroit hung onto eight offensive linemen – Dominic Raiola, Corey Hilliard, LaAdrian Waddle, Rob Sims, Riley Reiff, Larry Warford, third-round draft pick Travis Swanson and undrafted free agent Cornelius Lucas.
On the defensive line, Detroit kept Ndamukong Suh, Nick Fairley, Jason Jones, Ziggy Ansah, C.J. Mosley, Larry Webster, George Johnson, Devin Taylor and fifth-round draft pick Caraun Reid.
At linebacker for the Lions will be Stephen Tulloch, DeAndre Levy, second-round draft pick Kyle Van Noy, Tahir Whitehead, Ashlee Palmer and Travis Lewis.
The cornerbacks group includes Rashean Mathis, Darius Slay, Bill Bentley, Cassius Vaughn and fourth-round draft pick Nevin Lawson.
At safety the Lions kept James Ihedigbo, Glover Quin, Don Carey, Jerome Couplin and Isa Abdul-Quddus.
The specialists for Detroit will be kicker Nate Freese, punter Sam Martin and long snapper Don Muhlbach.
Notable cuts by the Lions include Kris Durham, Stafford’s former roommate at Georgia who turned into Detroit’s number two wide receiver last season after Nate Burleson went down; Mikel Leshoure, a former second-round pick who rushed for 798 yards in 2012; Andre Fluellen, a six-year veteran defensive lineman who has spent his whole career in Detroit; and tight end-turned-offensive lineman Michael Williams, who was competing with Lucas, a rookie, for the final spot in that unit.