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Detroit Lions host DE David Irving for a visit

The Lions are already looking at some defensive line help, but Irving comes with some baggage.

NFL: NOV 05 Chiefs at Cowboys Photo by Andrew Dieb/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The Detroit Lions are in full offseason mode, which means it’s time to start taking some flyer on players. Detroit did so on Wednesday, hosting former Cowboys defensive end David Irving for a visit according to ESPN’s Field Yates.

Irving went undrafted in 2015 out of Iowa State and after a short stint with the Kansas City Chiefs, his career blossomed with the Cowboys. After a quiet rookie season, Irving tallied 11 total sacks in 23 games played over the next two year.

However, his career quickly derailed after that. Between 2017 and 2019, Irving was suspended three times; first for violating the league’s policy on performance enhancing drugs, and the subsequent two times for violating the league’s policy on substances of abuse. Quickly after his most recent suspension, Irving announced he was retiring from the NFL due, in part, to the league’s policy on marijuana, which he viewed as hypocritical given the league’s reliance on opioids.

In 2020, the NFL altered its policy on marijuana. And while it remains on the banned substances list, players will no longer face suspension as punishment. They still face fines for positive tests and can be forced into the NFL treatment program.

After being reinstated by the league in October, the NFL came calling back for Irving. He joined the Raiders’ practice squad late in 2020 and made two game appearances for Las Vegas. In 40 defensive snaps played, Irving tallied a total of four tackles before being relegated back to the practice squad.

Because Irving finished the season on the practice squad, he is available to sign immediately and will not have to wait until the new league year. Irving also reportedly met with the Indianapolis Colts earlier in the week.

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After winning their first NFC North title in 30 years, the Lions have unfinished business this offseason. Stay updated with Jeremy Reisman through Pride of Detroit Direct, our newsletter offering up exclusive analysis. Sign up with NFCNORTH30 to get 30% off after your free trial.