Lions Release Geoff Schwartz as Cuts Begin

Aug 12, 2016; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Detroit Lions offensive guard Geoff Schwartz (74) reacts on the sidelines against the Pittsburgh Steelers during the fourth quarter at Heinz Field. The Lions won 30-17. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

The Detroit Lions made the first of what will be several more roster moves on Monday. The team released veteran offensive lineman Geoff Schwartz.

Schwartz took the news in stride,

The veteran joined the Lions early in the offseason but never really found a role. He was widely expected to be the top utility reserve, playing off his experience at both guard and tackle. Schwartz played sparingly in the preseason even though he has been healthy.

Recent roster moves, notably Sunday’s trade which brought Brandon Thomas to Detroit, made Schwartz expendable.

As was the case with the Stevan Ridley cut last week, the timing here is key. Lions GM Bob Quinn respected the veteran enough to cut him loose early and give Schwartz a chance to latch onto another roster in time to get some action in this week’s preseason finale. I spoke with a well-placed source on Sunday who advised me the team was attempting to trade Schwartz. Apparently there were no takers.

There is no doubt the journeyman will find work elsewhere. Social media has already linked the well-liked Schwartz to OL-needy destinations like Jacksonville, New Orleans and Indianapolis.

For Detroit, this is a sign the interior offensive line is pretty well set. Regardless of merit, the starting trio of Laken Tomlinson, Travis Swanson and Larry Warford are locked in. Third-round rookie Graham Glasgow will be one reserve, with either fellow rookie Joe Dahl or the newly acquired Thomas filling the other reserve spot. Dahl has demonstrably outplayed Glasgow in the preseason but the fourth-round pick cannot play center, which is Glasgow’s primary position.