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Recently-cut Lions kicker Riley Patterson quickly finds new team

Former Detroit Lions kicker Riley Patterson signed to the Cleveland Browns practice squad less than a week after getting cut.

Chicago Bears vs Detroit Lions Photo by Amy Lemus/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Prior to the Detroit Lions’ Week 15 game against the Denver Broncos, the team decided to make a change at kicker. Riley Patterson, who had been the team’s kicker all year, was benched in favor of Michael Badgley from the practice squad. This past week, the Lions made that change a permanent one, by waiving Patterson from the roster entirely to make room for rookie quarterback Hendon Hooker.

On Monday, Patterson was signed to the practice squad of the Cleveland Browns. Cleveland needed a kicker on a short week—they play the Jets on Thursday—after starter Dustin Hopkins suffered a hamstring injury in their Sunday win over the Texans. With no other kicker on their 53-man roster or practice squad, Patterson was an easy choice with a ready leg.

Some were a bit surprised to see the Lions make a midseason change at kicker. There was no real inciting incident, as Patterson was 15-of-17 on field goals this season, although he did miss two of 37 extra point attempts.

According to special teams coordinator Dave Fipp, the change was made due to a long-running competition in practice over the last six weeks.

“Internally, we had those guys competing in practice and so they would each get roughly six kicks a day and we’d kick them at least twice a week, so it was 12 kicks a week,” Fipp explained last week. “And over the course of six weeks, Badgley had been better, and we didn’t want to rush to make that decision right away. We felt like he deserved as fair of an opportunity as we could have given him, but it was clear at the end of the day that he was playing better.”

In his two game appearances for Detroit, Badgley has only attempted one field goal (a 37-yard make) and is 9-of-10 on extra points. His one miss was blocked by the Vikings last week.

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