3 former Detroit Lions who are surprisingly still free agents as June looms

Los Angeles Chargers v Indianapolis Colts
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Justin Jackson, Detroit Lions
Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

3. RB Justin Jackson

Jackson was an interesting addition to the Lions' running back room early in 2022 training camp. He was signed to the 53-man roster after Week 1, and stuck as the team's primary kickoff returner (26.7 average on 23 returns last season). But with the NFL's focus on eliminating that play from the game in the name of player safety, that helps explain why he's still available now.

In a vacuum, Jackson is also an "older" running back at 27 years old. But he has been a backup for his entire NFL career, four seasons with the Chargers and one with the Lions, with 248 career carries. So there's plenty of proverbial tread left on these tires.

But Jackson has been productive when has gotten opportunities. He averaged 5.0 yards per carry and 7.8 yards per reception during his time with the Chargers. In the three games with the Lions last year in which he played at least 20 offensive snaps, he had 77, 31 and 31 total yards with a rushing score.

Like last year, Jackson may be waiting until late-July/early-August to sign somewhere as teams take inventory of their running back depth and go, effectively, "hey, I didn't know he's available." But he really should be on a roster right now.