Entering rookie mini-camp, the Detroit Lions had four open spots remaining on their 90-man roster. Per NFL rules, they were allowed to bring in five unsigned players on a try-out basis during camp. Now that camp has concluded, two of those try-out players have reportedly taken advantage of their opportunity and earned a contract: Safety Alijah Holder and tight end Charlie Taumoepeau.
The Lions have not yet officially announced the signings but Holder’s representation, DEC Management, announced the deal on social media, while Dave Birkett of the Free Press broke the Taumoepeau news.
Holder played his college ball at Stanford but went undrafted in 2019 and signed with the Denver Broncos. He spent 2019 and 2020 bouncing between the Broncos practice squad and active roster, playing in 10 games and registering seven tackles. Of his 217 NFL snaps, the majority (174) came on special teams. Most of his work on defense was at strong safety and in the slot.
As I mentioned in my observations of Lions’ rookie mini-camp, Holden was starting in the team drills and during 7-on-7’s, indicating he was having a solid camp.
Taumoepeau was a UDFA out of Portland State in 2020, and he initially signed with the Dallas Cowboys. After being waived at cutdowns, he signed onto the Indianapolis Colts practice squad but only lasted two weeks before being released. He quickly joined the San Francisco 49ers’ practice squad but once again only had a short stay.
With Taumoepeau in the fold, the Lions now have seven healthy tight ends on the roster and an eighth—Hunter Bryant—on the reserve/NFI list.
The Lions still have two spots open on their 90-man roster.