With three weeks of the 2020 NFL season in the bag, the Lions have made a roster shuffle.
Safety Jayron Kearse was activated off of the Exempt/Commissioner Permission List after a three-game suspension for substance abuse. In order to free up a roster spot, the Lions opted to waive running back Ty Johnson.
Kearse will bolster a safety group that has struggled, with Tracy Walker not playing to his usual standards and Will Harris still showing growing pains. How the Lions will use their safeties, along with Duron Harmon, is still unknown, but all four could be contributors in their next game against the New Orleans Saints.
Ty Johnson was a sixth-round pick in the 2019 NFL Draft, and garnered some late-season touches. However, with Adrian Peterson, D’Andre Swift, and Kerryon Johnson in the backfield this year, there have not been any opportunities for Johnson. He was inactive in Week 3.
Earlier today, Matt Patricia mentioned that Johnson would be added to the injury report—he was eventually absent from it.
Curiously, Ty Johnson was waived, but with no injury designation.— Pride of Detroit (@PrideOfDetroit) October 1, 2020
Here's what Matt Patricia said earlier today:
" Ty Johnson – I’m not sure how much he’s going to do today either. He’ll show up on the injury report here"
Whether this means Johnson was hurt and recovered or if Patricia misspoke is unclear. Johnson was waived without an injury designation. The young running back will likely be a practice squad candidate if he clears waivers. The Lions also have Bo Scarbrough eligible to return off of the Injured Reserve, so additional running backs could be waiting in the wings.