The Detroit Lions announced on Tuesday afternoon that nickel cornerback Daryl Worley has been released.
The veteran cornerback replaced AJ Parker during Sunday’s contest against the Los Angeles Rams after Parker suffered a shoulder injury late in the third quarter. Worley struggled mightily, as Matthew Stafford picked on him almost immediately and completed a 59-yard pass to Cooper Kupp that set up the go-ahead score in the fourth quarter (another pass to Kupp with Worley in coverage). Worley finished with a team-low 26.1 PFF grade.
The Lions were already shorthanded at cornerback, but they do have a few options to replace Worley’s roster spot. Veteran corner Nickell Robey-Coleman is currently sitting on their practice squad and could step up and play the nickel. Additionally former Michigan State Spartan Shakur Brown—also on the practice squad—could potentially be promoted as an undrafted rookie.
Of course, all of this hinges on the health of Parker. After his shoulder injury, he did not return to the game. On Monday, the Lions hadn’t returned yet to Detroit for a proper medical assessment of Parker, but head coach Dan Campbell seemed to indicate Parker may be out for a few games.
“We don’t quite know yet. My gut says he’ll be down for a little while,” Campbell said.
With Worley’s release and Monday’s move to put offensive lineman Logan Stenberg on injured reserve, the Lions now have two open roster spots. It seems likely a cornerback will take at least one of those spots but don’t forget that the Lions have several players nearing a return from IR, including Taylor Decker, Da’Shawn Hand, and Kevin Strong.