Why the Detroit Lions only have 2 running backs on their 53-man roster

Find out why the Detroit Lions only have 2 running backs on their initial 53-man roster.

Why the Detroit Lions only have 2 running backs on their 53-man roster

The Detroit Lions surprised many when they revealed their 53-man roster for the 2023 season. After keeping fans in suspense by announcing their roster well past the 4:00 p.m. deadline, they left many scratching their heads by including just two running backs. This decision was particularly unexpected given the Lions' recent emphasis on their running game.

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Why It Matters

After experiencing their best ground game since the Barry Sanders era, they invested heavily in the run, choosing Jahmyr Gibbs with the No. 12 pick in the 2023 NFL Draft, and inking David Montgomery to a three-year, $18 million three-year deal. But where is Craig Reynolds, who most believed was a lock to make the initial roster? Will the Lions go into the 2023 season with just two running backs?

Big Picture: Chess, Not Checkers

Folks, relax. There is no chance that the Lions invade Arrowhead Stadium with only Gibbs and Montgomery as the only running backs on their roster. In fact, do not be surprised at all if the Lions bring back Craig Reynolds. Brad Holmes easily could have told Reynolds that the plan was to cut him and then re-sign him in the coming days. You see, Reynolds is a veteran, so he becomes an unrestricted free agent, unlike younger players who have to pass through waivers if they are cut. It's clear: General Manager Brad Holmes seems to have more cards up his sleeve. One way or another, the Lions WILL add another running back to the mix in the not-too-distant future.

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TL;DR (too long didn't read)

  1. Detroit Lions released a 53-man roster with only two running backs.
  2. They previously focused heavily on running, notably picking Jahmyr Gibbs 12th overall.
  3. Another running back addition seems imminent, possibly Craig Reynolds or a new face.

Bottom Line – Lions' Leap of Faith

The Detroit Lions‘ decision to list only two running backs on their 53-man roster has raised eyebrows and sparked debates among fans and experts alike. While the team has made significant strides in their ground game, this recent move suggests they might be playing a long game. Whether it's a tactical decision, a play for flexibility, or another twist in their strategy, it's evident the Lions aren't afraid to defy convention. Brad Holmes will be adding another RB to the mix, and I predict it will be Craig Reynolds who will come back.