Did these 5 Detroit Lions do enough to crack the final 53?
Isaac Nauta, TE
Last year, the Lions fielded the worst tight end positional group in the entire NFL. This offseason, Detroit completely revamped the position adding four talented players to the group. Two through free agency (Jesse James, Logan Thomas) and two through the draft (T.J. Hockenson, Isaac Nauta).
Hockenson, James, and Thomas appear to be all locks to make the final roster in Detroit. The lingering question is Nauta. Injuries to other positions may simply not allow the Lions to keep four tight ends on their final roster.
But the seventh-round rookie made it a difficult decision for the Detroit brass, turning in a nice stat-line of three receptions off three targets for 45 yards and a touchdown against the Browns on Thursday night.
Whether Nauta makes the Lions’ final 53-man roster might not come down to his abilities as a receiver. Instead, his development as a blocker and his chances of making in through waivers without being claimed could be major factors in the final decision. If Detroit believes they can successfully stash Nauta on their practice squad, they may opt to do so.