Just as it appeared undrafted rookie tight end Hunter Bryant was getting healthy enough to make his NFL debut, the 22-year-old player has been placed on injured reserve by the Detroit Lions.
Bryant suffered a hamstring injury in training camp, but he had impressed enough in practice for the Lions to keep him on the 53-man roster. He returned to practice before the team’s Week 4 game, but after he came back from the bye week, he was back on the injury report with a concussion. Now, he’ll be sidelined for at least another three games on the Lions’ short-term IR list.
The Lions have been perfectly fine at tight end without Bryant, as T.J. Hockenson and Jesse James have both been significant contributors through four games.
However, the move does open up a roster spot for the Lions. It’s unclear how the Lions plan on using it, but with center Frank Ragnow officially listed as questionable for Sunday’s game against the Jacksonville Jaguars, it makes sense for the Lions to use that spot on some offensive line depth.
Detroit could activate Joe Dahl from injured reserve if he’s ready to go. The team could also promote Beau Benzschawel from the practice squad, although new NFL rules allow them to do that without costing them a roster spot.
Expect the Lions to make a corresponding roster move on Saturday.