clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Saturday open thread: Which ‘bubble’ player are you hoping makes the Lions’ final roster?

Which dark-horse candidate for the Lions roster are you rooting for?

NFL Combine - Day 5 Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images

It’s the worst day on the NFL calendar.

By 4 p.m. ET on Saturday afternoon, all NFL teams will have to cut down their roster to 53 players. While many teams got a head start earlier in the week, the Detroit Lions are making essentially all of their moves on cutdown day. Thus far, only one player—wide receiver Chris Lacyhas been waived, meaning Detroit will have to make 26 more moves to reduce their roster to the league maximum.

For many players, there’s no reason to worry. Their roster spots have been safe since the beginning of camp. But given Detroit’s increased competition across the board, there are a lot of players on the proverbial roster bubble; they may be in, but they very well could be out.

A lot of these players are easy to root for. Everyone likes a darkhorse—a player that overcame incredible odds to not only make an NFL roster, but contribute significantly to the team, be it on special teams or otherwise.

So today’s Question of the Day is:

Which Lions ‘roster bubble’ player are you hoping makes the final 53-man roster?

My answer: While I try not to root too hard for individual players this time of year—not because I don’t like the players, but because you can get burned pretty quickly in this business—I truly am pulling for John Penisini.

When I spoke to his defensive coordinator at Utah, he told me a pretty inspiring story of a kid who was teetering on losing his chance at football, but quickly got his act together. Not only that, but Penisini just seems like an extremely affable guy.

He may make the roster simply because the Lions don’t have much in terms of backup nose tackles, but he’s still got an upward climb to make it in the NFL. At just 6-foot-1 with an arm length of 32 and 7/8th inches, he’s far from the prototypical size for a defensive tackle. But it’s always inspiring to me to see people break the mold and succeed in the face of adversity. It won’t happen right away for Penisini, but I’ll be rooting for him.

Your turn.