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Ranking every player on the 2023 Detroit Lions roster: 80-71

Our ranking of the Detroit Lions’ 2023 roster continues with players 80-71—many of which will likely stick around on the practice squad.

NFL: Chicago Bears at Detroit Lions David Reginek-USA TODAY Sports

Our rankings of the Detroit Lions’ entire 2023 roster continues with players 80 through 71. This group of players should all be considered relative long-shots to make the roster, but don’t be surprised to see a lot of these players stick around on the practice squad. There is some talent amongst this group, and as you’ll see, several of these players were ranking in the 50s and 60s last year, showing just how much year-to-year improvement the roster has gone through.

Reminder: This list is based on the average of eight different Pride of Detroit staff members’ individual lists.


80. OT Connor Galvin (High: 74; Low: 88 )

Last year’s ranking: N/A

We start this list with another undrafted rookie. Detroit is certainly looking for a long-term swing tackle after recent struggles from Matt Nelson. Galvin could be that guy, but it would be an uphill battle to earn that job in 2023. He comes with five years of starting experience as Baylor’s left tackle. While Galvin may have a future at guard, the Lions were still repping him at tackle in the spring.

79. LB Trevor Nowaske (High: 76; Low: 87)

Last year’s ranking: N/A

Nowaske sits at the bottom of the Lions’ seven-man linebacker room. That said, he brings a lot of tempting physical traits (9.86 RAS) and two years of really solid production at Saginaw Valley State (total 182 tackles, 5.5 sacks, 19 tackles for loss, five interceptions).

But the NFL will be a big developmental jump fro Nowaske, and he seems like a prime candidate to incubate on the practice squad for a year.

78. OT Darrin Paulo (High: 74; Low: 85)

Last year’s ranking: N/A

Paulo was added right before training camp last year, so he did not make our 2022 list. He essentially spent the entire 2022 season on the practice squad, so his development is a bit unknown. However, Paulo has been wandering around the NFL since coming into the league as an undrafted rookie in 2020.

He earned himself a futures contract in January, but he certainly faces an uphill battle to crack the 53-man roster. The Lions are giving him some opportunities at guard, so that flexibility could help.

77. QB Adrian Martinez (High: 55; Low: 82)

Last year’s ranking: N/A

Martinez had a rough spring and doesn’t look particularly close to pushing for the backup job against Nate Sudfeld. However, with Hendon Hooker potentially starting the season on the Non-Football Injury list, Martinez has a real chance of sticking around on the practice squad or even the 53-man roster if Detroit opts to keep three quarterbacks. At the very least, Martinez gives the Lions a scout team look of a mobile, athletic quarterback—as he rushed for 1,152 yards and 23 touchdowns in his final two years at college.

76. CB Steven Gilmore (High: 74; Low: 84)

Last year’s ranking: N/A

Gilmore will get a lot of attention for being the younger brother of star cornerback Stephon Gilmore, but he’s a good player on his own. At Marshall, he produced 29 pass breakups and seven interceptions in his final three seasons.

He’ll have a tough time cracking the Lions’ revamped defensive back room this year, though. At 6-foot, 174 pounds, he’ll have to put on some NFL weight if he wants to stay on the outside, because the inside is looking crowded with C.J. Gardner-Johnson, Brian Branch, Chase Lucas and even Will Harris.

75. LS Scott Daly (High: 54; Low: 82)

Last year’s ranking: 55th

While nothing catastrophic happened to Daly and the Lions long-snapping game, there were certainly some scary moments throughout the 2022 season. It was bad enough for the Lions to sign former Pro Bowl long snapper Jake McQuaid, which can’t be a great sign for Daly. Maybe it’s a move to just create some competition, because it certainly wouldn’t be ideal to pick the 35-year-old long sapper over the 29-year-old.

74. S Brandon Joseph (High: 74; Low: 84)

Last year’s ranking: N/A

Joseph is one of the more higher-regarded UDFA signings this year. Joseph tallied nine interceptions with Northwestern before transferring to Notre Dame in 2022. It’s not an impossible route to the 53-man roster, with only Tracy Walker, Kerby Joseph and Ifeatu Melifonwu clearly ahead of him. However, he’ll have to shine on special teams early and often to give himself a legit chance.

73. WR Trinity Benson (High: 68; Low: 75)

Last year’s ranking: 58th

Benson falling 15 spots is a true indication of the improvement of this team’s depth. After a disappointing 2021 season, we were already pretty low on Benson. Now, a year later, Benson has played in just one more game due to an injury-plagued 2022 season.

This year is likely his final shot to make an impact, and with Jameson Williams’ six-game suspension, there is a tiny crack in the window for him. That said, he’ll have to beat the likes of rookie Antoine Green, Tom Kennedy and Maurice Alexander for a shot at the WR5/6 jobs.

72. RB Greg Bell (High: 62; Low: 76)

Last year’s ranking: 80th

There was some early buzz about Bell in training camp last year (he got $100,000 guaranteed on his UDFA contract), but Bell suffered a season-ending injury in that first week before he could realize any of that potential.

Now back and healthy for 2023, Bell faces a revamped running backs room with a new positional coach, to boot. What Bell brings to a wide open RB3 competition is good vision, patience, and the fearlessness to play physically, even with an undersized frame.

71. S Brady Breeze (High: 64; Low: 72)

Last year’s ranking: 68th

Breeze has quietly been a solid special teams contributors during the Dan Campbell era. Originally acquired toward the end of 2021, Breeze has made six game appearances, playing around 15-20 special teams snaps in each contest. That could give him the early leg up over someone like Brandon Joseph, but he’ll need to continue to show his tenacity on defense, too.

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