27-Year-Old Aussie Punter Among Lions UDFA Signings


With the draft behind us, it's UDFA season. 

Lions GM Bob Quinn said Saturday he expects to sign seven to 10 undrafted free agents, and he's well underway as of Monday afternoon. The most notable of his seven signings are Washington TE Hunter Bryant and Auburn P Arryn Siposs. 

Siposs has a good chance to replace Sam Martin, who departed via free agency this offseason after seven seasons in Detroit. He's the latest in a growing line of Australian punters to make the move to the NFL. Sippos, who turns 28 in November, played five seasons of professional Aussie Rules Football, before spending the last two seasons at Auburn. He'll compete with Jack Fox, a UDFA last year, for the job as Detroit's starting punter. 

Bryant has a more familiar backstory. First-team All-Pac 12 last season at Washington, where he caught 52 passes for 825 yards, he was projected to be drafted as early as the fourth round. The Lions scooped him up almost as soon as the draft ended. Bryant will compete with Isaac Nauta and Matt Sokol for the No. 3 TE spot behind T.J. Hockenson and Jesse James.

"He will get the matchup-tight-end moniker, but scouts feel like he's more of a big slot receiver in the pros," writes NFL.com draft analyst Lance Zierlein. "He doesn't have ideal size or determination as a blocker, but he has sticky hands with the acceleration to work past linebackers and threaten seams."

The Lions have also signed Notre Dame S Jalen Elliott, Auburn DB Jeremiah Dinson, Norfolk State DB Bobby Price, South Dakota State FB Luke Sellers and Iowa State LS Steven Wirtel. Elliott and Dinson will be two players to watch in training camp as Detroit reshapes its secondary. 

The club has released RB Tra Carson, LS James Fisher, G Casey Tucker and P Matt Wile to make room on its roster for the new additions.