Finally healthy for a full training camp, Austin Bryant is taking the opportunity to move himself off the Detroit Lions roster bubble.
Injuried limited Austin Bryant to 10 games over his first two NFL seasons. He was healthier in 2021, with 4.5 sacks (the first sacks of his career) over 14 games. Entering his fourth season with the Lions and the final year of his rookie contract, he has finally been healthy for a full training camp.
The Lions re-signed Charles Harris this offseason, then drafted Aidan Hutchinson and Josh Paschal. Add in Romeo and Julian Okwara, and Bryant was quickly put on the roster bubble. And probably on the wrong side of it.
But Romeo Okwara and Paschal started training camp on the PUP list, and it’s not out of the question they’ll open the season still on the list. So opportunity has knocked for Bryant.
Austin Bryant taking opportunity to move himself off Lions’ roster bubble
Reports throughout training camp have noted how good Bryant has looked. He talked to the media about his situation after Thursday’s joint practice against the Indianapolis Colts (via Pride of Detroit).
"I’ve) made some plays,” Bryant humbly said on Thursday. “It’s been good. Did a lot for my confidence, still got a long way to go though. Shoot, it’s just preseason week 2. We got a lot left to do, the roster’s not made yet, so got a lot to do.”"
During Day 2 of the sessions against the Colts Thursday, as part of a far better effort from the Lions’ defense compared to Day 1 on Wednesday, Bryant was credited with three sacks.
Kyle Meinke of MLive went all the way with a prediction for Bryant.
"Speaking of monster … Austin Bryant had 3(!) sacks, was drawing doubles by day’s end. He’s making this team guys,”"
The Lions will be resting most of their starters for Saturday’s game against the Colts. So Bryant is in line for a lot of playing time, with an opportunity to render it a moot point that he’ll make the 53-man roster.