4 Detroit Lions who won't make the 53-man roster in 2024

It's incredibly early, of course, but these four Detroit Lions players are already in real danger of not making the 53-man roster this year.

Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports
facebooktwitterreddit
Prev
3 of 5
Next

3. DT Levi Onwuzurike

It's easy to forget that Onwuzurike, despite sitting out his final season at Washington due to the COVID-19 pandemic, landed as a first-round pick in some late 2021 mock drafts. The Lions took him in the second round, and he battled through a lingering back injury to play 16 games as a rookie.

A more severe back injury very early in 2022 camp ultimately sidelined Onwuzurike for all of that season. He eventually revealed the extent of the surgery he needed, and the challenging recovery from it, but he was healthy and ready to continue his football career heading into last season.

Despite (based on memory) not ever landing on an injury report throughout last season, Onwuzurike hardly played (10 regular season games; 132 snaps) and he was not impactful when he was on the field (one sack, five total tackles). Back issues don't just go away, and the major surgery Onwuzurike had has clearly sapped his potential to be a difference maker in the NFL.

Cutting Onwuzurike right now doesn't do much to help the Lions' financially, so it looks like he'll get a chance to earn a spot in the defensive tackle rotation one more time during this year's camp.