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Detroit Lions preseason standouts WR Brandon Powell, TE Hakeem Valles make final roster

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Don’t say the preseason doesn’t matter.

NFL: New York Giants at Detroit Lions Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports

The preseason may not matter much to the individual fan, but two Detroit Lions players proved it matters to the teams.

According to the Detroit Free Press, preseason standouts tight end Hakeem Valles and wide receiver Brandon Powell have made the team’s initial 53-man roster.

Brandon Powell’s emergence this preseason was the best story to follow in the opening month of football. The Lions already great depth at wide receiver made it look like the Lions may not have room for Powell on the roster, but his solid play forced the Lions’ hand.

Powell was the team’s leading receiver this preseason and even returned a punt for a touchdown that triggered the late swing that earned Detroit their first preseason victory in Week 3.

Valles was one of the only tight ends to stand out during the entire preseason, so it’s little surprise that he’s sticking around. The bigger question now is if the Lions are keeping four tight ends or if another cut is coming. Michael Roberts’ roster spot may no longer be safe.