Typically, the Detroit Lions would assign their protected practice squad players on Tuesday, but because they played their Week 2 game on Monday, they get an extra 24 hours grace period to make this decision.
They have a pretty consistent approach to the protected practice squad. Protect the quarterback position, protect the spots that are weak due to injury or need competition, and use the remaining spots to protect the players they deem the most talented on the practice squad.
This week, per the NFL transaction report, the Lions have elected to protect the maximum four players, including three of the same players from Week’s 1 and 2:
- Steven Montez, QB
- Bruce Hector, DL
- Jalen Elliott, S
- Ryan Santoso, K (New this week)
Santoso was having a solid preseason and it led to the Carolina Panthers trading for him at cutdowns. After Week 1, the Panthers opted to go in a different direction and signed Zane Gonzalez off the Lions’ practice squad. Santoso was signed to the Lions’ practice squad this morning and will compete with active roster kicker Austin Seibert. Time is a flat circle.
As I said last week, as long as Tim Boyle is on injured reserve, expect Montez to be protected by the Lions. That way they can assure that they will have three quarterbacks available to practice and potentially available for the game.
Hector and Elliot are value players for this roster as they can fill multiple roles on defense (special teams as well for Elliott) and were two of the more challenging cuts when establishing the 53-man roster.