Cook: Undrafted Free-Agents Swarm Detroit

James Cook shares the undrafted free-agents that have reportedly signed with Detroit, including a breakdown of each in addition to a realistic "Projection" with regards to their status with the ball club.

Undrafted free agents who have reportedly signed with the Detroit Lions:

WR Darrell Blackman, North Carolina State
Not too tall (5-10), but ran 4.55 and 4.45 in the 40. Elusive in the open field. Main asset is as a return specialist, but could be an option down the road as a slot receiver. Needs to work on routes and blocking and isn't a deep threat in the passing game. Has has some injury issues, but none too major. Has some RB experience.

Projection: Could make the team or practice squad as a returner. Not much of an option as a WR at this point, but could develop. An excellent gamble on a UDFA.

S Bobbie Williams, Bethune-Cookman
Has solid NFL size for a safety at 6-0, 214 and ran the 40 in 4.54. Has a little kic return experience. Finished career with 187 tackles (7.5 for losses), 12 pass breakups, 15 interceptions, two forced fumbles, one blocked kick. A tough run defender and a big hitter capable of holding his own in zone coverage but he'll have problems in man coverage. Was projected as a seventh-round pick.

Projection: If Kalvin Pearson's legal problems force him out and Caleb Campbell and Greg Blue is moved to LB, Williams has a shot. Otherwise, the numbers work against him, and he'd be playing in camp to make the practice squad, which is a very real possibility.

QB Eric Sanders, North Iowa
Three-plus-year starter at UNI, he completed 75.2 percent of his passes (2,842 yards, 17 TD, 6 INT) as a senior, 67.9 as a junior (1,934, 15, 7) and 68.3 as a sophomore (2,929, 23, 5). Also started 7 games as a freshman (1,307, 15, 5). Ran for 1172 yards and 13 TDs. Ran a West Coast system at North Iowa, which accounts for the high completion percentage. Lacks ideal size (6-1, 200), has average speed (4.80-40) and arm strength isn't standout.

Projection: Since the Lions don't run the WCO, it's curious why they signed this particular QB, other than to have another arm in camp.

RB Allen Ervin, Lambuth
Small-college runner who put up big numbers. Measured up at 5-11, 224 and ran a 4.57 in the 40 with 23 reps of 225, 37-inch vertical and 10-8 broadjump. Led the NAIA in all-purpose yardage. Impressed scouts with his toughness between tackles and breakaway speed. Needs more moves. Mike Mayock listed him among his top three draft snubs.

Projection: Doesn't have much of a shot, unless injuries hit in training camp. Could be a practice squad candidate.

QB Mark Nicolet, Hillsdale
Has decent measurables (6-foot-2, 220, 4.75 in 40). Can scramble well. Threw for 3,335 yards and 31 touchdowns as a senior.

Projection: Not gonna make it.

LB Tyronne Pruitt, Boston College
A teammate of Lions first-round pick Gosder Cherilus at BC, Pruitt is 5-11, 222. He didn't stand out a lot at BC and isn't a top-notch athlete. Had only 40 tackles (30 solo) as a senior for the Eagles. Most memorable moment was recovering an on-side kick against Virginia Tech to set up BC's game-winning TD in a 14-10 victory.

Projection: No shot.

SS Vince Gliatta, Youngstown State
6-1, 220-pound free safety was a second-team Gateway Conference pick after notching 66 tackles (41 solo, 10.5 for loss), two sacks, three forced fumbles, one fumble recovery and one interceptions. Also returned a blocked punt for a TD. Former QB who transferred from Penn State. Tough and showed good instincts. Not a burner.

Projection: Practice squad at best.

LB Brian Bradford, Towson
Recorded 328 tackles at Towson. A smart, instinctive football player who rarely takes a false step to the ball. Lacks great size (6-2, 235) and strength, but knows how to play this game well and is very tough. Finished second in FCS with 149 tackles as a senior. Added 13.5 tackles for a loss, 3.5 sacks, four forced fumbles, an interception and a blocked field goal in 11 games.

Projection: Has plenty of competition at LB, but could be a surprise. Likely a practice squad contender.

LS Jonathan Weeks, Baylor
Team captain at Baylor, which was 3-8 last year. Only 5-foot-10, but stout at 258 pounds. Four-year starter at long snapper for the Bears. Former walk-on who worked his way into a scholarship, then was picked as a captain by his teammates.

Projection: Insurance for Don Muhlbach.


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