The Detroit Lions announced a pair of roster moves on Thursday during their bye week. Running back Devine Ozigbo has been waived, while practice squad linebacker Trevor Nowaske has been signed to the 53-man roster.
Ozigbo’s waiving seems to suggest that David Montgomery is close to returning from his rib injury suffered in Week 6 against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Currently, the Lions are only rostering Montgomery, Jahmyr Gibbs, and Craig Reynolds—a pretty light load of running backs, especially if Montgomery’s injury was still a concern.
Ozigbo will now be subject to waivers. If he clears waivers, he’s a likely candidate to return by signing to the practice squad. He’s been on the practice squad since mid-September before getting promoted to the 53-man roster prior to “Monday Night Football” against the Las Vegas Raiders.
As for Nowaske getting the promotion from the practice squad, that’s a little tougher to understand. The Lions already have six rostered linebackers, four of whom are significant special teams contributors (Derrick Barnes, Malcolm Rodriguez, Jalen Reeves-Maybin, Anthony Pittman). It’s possible that a linebacker is suffering from an injury, but we likely won’t find out about that until the Lions return from their bye week.
Nowaske is an undrafted rookie out of Saginaw Valley State. The 6-foot-3, 235-pound linebacker has impressive athletic traits.
Trevor Nowaske is a LB prospect in the 2023 draft class. He scored a 9.86 #RAS out of a possible 10.00. This ranked 38 out of 2648 LB from 1987 to 2023. https://t.co/ACwLrC4FXZ pic.twitter.com/8MeZi0oziO— Kent Lee Platte (@MathBomb) April 18, 2023
Nowaske was also quite productive in college, posting 182 tackles, 19 tackles for loss, and five interceptions in his final two seasons combined. In three preseason appearances for the Lions, Nowaske tallied 7 tackles and a pass defense.