In a continuing theme of churning the bottom of their roster, the Detroit Lions made another mid-OTA transaction on Wednesday afternoon. The team has signed free agent linebacker Trevor Bates, while waiving tight end DeAndre Goolsby to make room for him on the roster.
Bates was drafted in the seventh round of the 2016 NFL Draft by the Indianapolis Colts. He didn’t make the Colts’ final 53-man roster but spent a month on their practice squad before he was cut again. A month later, the New England Patriots swiped him up and placed him on their practice squad.
The Patriots signed him to a futures contract going into the 2017 season, but Bates failed to make their final 53-man roster, as well. After a brief stint on the Patriots’ practice squad, the team released him and he spent a little over a month on the Giants’ practice squad.
Bates’ arduous journey in the NFL has only resulted in one regular season performance: A game with the Colts in which he played 22 special teams snaps with no statistics recorded.
At 6-foot-2, 247 pounds, Bates fits the profile of the big, athletic linebackers that the Lions have brought in this offseason. Obviously, Bates also has familiarity with Matt Patricia and his defense, seeing as he spent nearly a full year, spanning two different season, with the Patriots. Earlier this offseason, the Lions signed another former Patriots linebacker, Jonathan Freeny.
For what it’s worth, Bates was twice named “Practice Player of the Week” in New England.
To make room for Bates, the Lions cut Florida tight end DeAndre Goolsby, who was one of our four undrafted free agents to watch during rookie minicamp. The Lions reportedly gave him a $7,000 salary guarantee, which is on the higher end of the scale for UDFAs, but his performance must not have met their expectations.