Meet Your Practice Squad

Monday, September 7, 2009

The Lions officially have until 4pm today to make waiver claims in order to fill out the roster before the beginning of the 2009 NFL season. However, the Lions will continue to have 1st waiver priority for the duration of the month of September.

The Lions did make a move this morning, adding QB-Brock Berlin as the eighth and final member of the practice squad. Berlin doesn't have NFL level size or talent and is probably only fodder for the scout team until Drew Stanton returns.

Here are the other seven members of the practice squad.

Dan Gerberry

Gerberry is two inches taller and seven lbs heavier than Dominic Raiola. Some hope he can turn into the mauler type center fans want after a year or two under Schwartz and his power lifting plan. Gerberry was kept because he can play all three interior line positions and has great upside out of Ball State.

John Broussard

Originally drafted out of San Jose St, Broussard is a speedy young receiver who can get vertical in a hurry but lacks fundamental skills and the ability to beat more physical corners in press coverage. Again, a player with a bit of upside.

Carson Butler

The undrafted rookie TE out of Michigan had a surprising preseason and showed flashes of talent but lacks consistency. (Every Michigan fan already knew this.) If the coaching staff can get him to concentrate and get past his own mental shortcomings, he has the ability to be a very good receiving TE.

Dan Gronkowski

A seventh round pick and fan favorite, "Gronk" is a TE with a lot of size and athleticism known for his blocking rather than his receiving. The front office will look for him to add weight and take over for Will Heller down the road.

Tristan Davis

After TE, RB is probably the Lions deepest position. For what its worth, the Patriots also put a claim in on the oft-injured speedster from Auburn. He is a little bigger with the exact same talent set the Lions had in Antone Smith (now with the Vikings).

Zack Follett

It is surprising that Follett, possibly one of the team's most popular players, wasn't kept on the active roster as a special teamer. Follett has immediate value in small doses but the organization is hoping he can improve his coverage skills and be a diamond in the rough for a franchise lacking late round (or any round) draft success.

Lydon Murtha

At 6'7", Murtha has more than enough size and smarts to play in the NFL. Seattle put in a waiver claim for him as well and the Lions may need to activate him later in the season to avoid losing his upside to another team. Down the road, he could easily become the Lions' swing tackle.