Third quarterback rule will not impact Detroit Lions' roster decisions

The Detroit Lions proposed the new rule regarding a third quarterback for teams, but it won't impact their roster decisions before next week.
Kirthmon F. Dozier / USA TODAY NETWORK

If they hadn't done it, another team would have. But the Detroit Lions were the team that proposed a new rule regarding teams being able to have a third available quarterback for a game, and not necessarily have to have him count against that day's active players.

Let's summarize it as the emergency quarterback rule, rooted in the San Francisco 49ers not having an available healthy quarterback during last year's NFC Championship Game.

With Teddy Bridgewater's arrival to obviously take over as the Lions' No. 2 quarterback behind Jared Goff, the idea of keeping Nate Sudfeld (or someone else) as the third quarterback on the 53-man roster has been out there.

That idea, flimsy as it feels regarding Sudfeld at least, could create an interesting roster decision. Someone who would have otherwise made it would be cut if the Lions keep a third quarterback on their final 53 going into the season.

Dan Campbell says emergency quarterback rule will not impact Lions' roster decisions

Speaking to reporters before Tuesday's practice, including Justin Rogers of The Detroit News, Lions head coach Dan Campbell was asked if the third quarterback rule would impact roster decisions heading into next Tuesday's deadline to be from 90 down to 53 players.

After talking on the topic of the general roster build, Campbell got to a punch line.

"No, I don't feel like that has a bearing," "Just because we presented the rule, we have to keep three quarterbacks? That's not a must.""

It's no surprise Campbell had that response to the notion of keeping a third quarterback. Like it's a "because you can, you should" thing, or because the Lions proposed the rule they will automatically keep a third quarterback on cutdown day. There will obviously be accounting for filling out position groups sufficiently, but the best 53 players will make the roster.

Situations can and do change, and the 53-man roster is a living entity each week of a season. But heading into the season. the Lions don't seem very likely to have a third quarterback on the active roster.

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