Unlike last year, the Detroit Lions don’t have to start cutting down their roster to 75 players before the final preseason game. Teams can now carry 90 players up until 4 p.m. ET on Saturday, but that didn’t stop Detroit from releasing two veteran players on Monday morning. The team announced that tight end Tim Wright and wide receiver Keshawn Martin have been released.
Wright was added recently to the team after the Lions were suffering from a myriad of injuries at tight end. The Lions traded for him back in 2015 and he was a mild contributor that year, pulling in nine catches and two touchdowns in nine games. His 2016 season was lost due to a torn ACL in the offseason.
Wright’s release is probably good news for Cole Wick, who has been receiving second and third-string reps during the preseason. Wick suffered an injury during Friday’s game against the Patriots, but on Sunday, head coach Jim Caldwell said he “will be okay.” News of the team moving on from Wright could be a sign of good health for Wick.
As for Keshawn Martin, his cut comes as a bit of a surprise. Martin was in the middle of Detroit’s hotly-contested punt and kick return battle during camp. He looked very good in the role against the New York Jets, returning a kickoff for 43 yards and a punt for 22. However, Martin was limited as a receiver, catching only four passes for 25 yards in three games.
Now, Jace Billingsley, Jared Abbrederis and TJ Jones are that much closer to a roster spot. The Lions may keep four or five receivers, with Golden Tate, Marvin Jones Jr. and Kenny Golladay all locks to make the 53-man roster.