The Detroit Lions cut 10 players on Monday and one on Tuesday along with placing two players on PUP and one on injured reserve to trim their roster to the NFL-mandated 75 players. Here’s a closer look at the first cuts:
Most significant move: The biggest surprise, sort of, was the Lions letting go of tight end Matthew Mulligan. He was the Lions’ primary blocking tight end with Brandon Pettigrew headed to the PUP list. Mulligan had a significant run with the first-team offense throughout the preseason. His status as a vested veteran hurt him a bit as he would have had his contract guaranteed if he had been with the club through the first game of the season. It also signifies that the Lions are likely to keep Cornelius Lucas, who had been used as the sixth lineman pretty often, on the roster.
Jimmy Landes lost the battle: He was GM Bob Quinn’s most controversial draft pick in May as teams rarely draft long-snappers. Yet Quinn did and it seemed to signify the end of Don Muhlbach's time with the Lions. Yet Muhlbach outsnapped Landes during the preseason and then Landes had issues during Saturday’s preseason game against Baltimore. He’s now on the shelf for the year, requiring shoulder surgery.
Quinn showing he can make tough moves: He brought in Jeremy Kerley, Geoff Schwartz and Stevan Ridley as part of his first free-agent class. None of them made it to the regular-season roster for the Lions. Schwartz was cut Monday after the Lions drafted two interior linemen. Ridley never moved up the depth chart and was released before Detroit’s third preseason game. Kerley? The Lions traded him. This shows Quinn is very much like his mentor, Bill Belichick, in that he shows little sentimental attachment to players and has no problem making moving on if moves he made weren’t the right ones.
Lions moves: Cut – RB Stevan Ridley, WR Quinshad Davis, TE Matthew Mulligan, OL Geoff Schwartz, OL Chase Farris, DE Deonte Gibson, DE Louis Palmer, DE Quanterus Smith, CB Rashaad Reynolds, CB Crezdon Butler, K Devon Bell. Injured reserve – LS Jimmy Landes. PUP – WR Corey Fuller, TE Brandon Pettigrew