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Lions announce signing of 9 players to futures deals

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The Lions have signed nine players to futures contracts.

NFL: OCT 16 Rams at Lions Photo by Michael Allio/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

As hinted to by the earlier announcement of the Jared Abbrederis signing, the Detroit Lions have wasted no time in signing players to futures deals. The team confirmed the Abbrederis signing along with eight other players on Monday afternoon. Here’s a look at the players:

WR Jared Abbrederis
TE Kennard Backman
RB Mike James
TE Khari Lee
LB Steve Longa
OL Matt Rotheram
OL Brandon Thomas
WR Andrew Turzilli
DB Charles Washington

As pointed out by Justin Rogers, eight of the nine signings were players that ended the season on Detroit’s practice squad, with the only exception being Abbrederis, who was a free agent at the end of the regular season. The two players that ended on the practice squad but were not offered contracts are OL Jason Weaver and WR Rashad Ross.

Some notable names among the signings are Brandon Thomas, who the Lions acquired in a trade prior to the start of the 2016 season that sent wide receiver Jeremy Kerley to the 49ers, Khari Lee, who played in eight games for the Lions in 2016, and Steve Longa, who spent most of the time on the practice squad as a rookie but did make one game appearance in 2016.