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NFL free agency: Veteran TE Brent Celek visiting with Detroit Lions Thursday

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The Lions are already looking to replace Eric Ebron’s vacancy.

NFL: Philadelphia Eagles at Los Angeles Rams Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports

With the loss of Darren Fells to free agency and the decision to release Eric Ebron, the Detroit Lions are in the market for a tight end. And they apparently are already hosting one to add as a replacement. According to Adam Caplan, the Lions are hosting former Eagles tight end Brent Celek for a meeting on Thursday:

Celek, 33, is long past his days of being a huge impact tight end in the receiving game. Though he once was regularly catching 50+ passes a season, in his past two years, he has just 285 receiving yards and one touchdown combined. However, Celek has found himself in a blocking niche since turning 30.

But Celek is starting to see some decline even in that role. He ranked just 57th out of 69 tight end in run blocking, per PFF (via Bleeding Green Nation). On the positive side, he was 26th in pass blocking.

Still, the Lions are in desperate times when it comes to their tight end depth. The three tight ends currently signed to the team—Michael Roberts, Hakeem Valles and Brandon Barnes—have combined for just 27 games played and four career catches. Celek can provide some veteran leadership to the group, while increasing the talent level significantly.