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Lions making good use of practice squad

The Detroit Lions' practice squad has come in very handy so far this season.

Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports

This week's question from Marshall Faulk has to do with a bold decision I'd like to see the Detroit Lions make. Considering they're 3-1 and have the top defense in the NFL right now, there really isn't much of a need to do something "bold" at this point in time.

Instead, I'm going to focus this week on something the Lions have already been doing throughout the 2014 season: relying on their practice squad to fill holes created by injuries. With the practice squad expanding to 10 players this year, the Lions were able to keep a couple extra bodies than usual, and they actually filled their initial practice squad entirely with players from their final round of cuts. That spoke to the amount of depth they had in the preseason, and several of the players who ended up on the practice squad have already gotten promoted to the 53-man roster:

RB George Winn
LB Julian Stanford
CB Mohammed Seisay
S Nate Ness

Ness only spent a couple days on the 53-man roster, and Winn was just called up this week, so his exact role remains to be seen. Stanford and Seisay have each played in the Lions' last two games, though, and they have helped make up for the various injuries the Lions have suffered on defense so far this season.

In addition to utilizing their own practice squad, the Lions also added linebacker Josh Bynes from the Baltimore Ravens' practice squad. This means that in total, five of the Lions' signings since Week 1 have involved practice-squaders. By comparison, the Lions have added only three free agents in that same span of time (Garrett Reynolds, Danny Gorrer and Alex Henery).

All of this is a long way of saying that the Lions have been utilizing the practice squad quite a bit so far this season. Injuries have necessitated this to an extent, but instead of relying primarily on free agents to fill holes on their roster, the Lions have been content with giving promotions to players from the practice squad. This highlights the original job they did constructing their practice squad, and it's a nice window into just how much talent they had to let go during the final round of cuts this year.

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