Allen Park — The Detroit Lions cut five players Monday evening, getting the roster to 80 a day ahead of when the NFL requires teams to be at that mark.
Wide receiver Darius Jennings, as a veteran, was released outright and is free to immediately sign with another team. Additionally, nose tackle P.J. Johnson, running back Javon Leake, outside linebacker Robert McCray and quarterback Jordan Ta’amu were placed on waivers, giving the league’s other 31 teams 24 hours to put in a claim.
Four of the five players, excluding McCray, signed with the Lions during training camp to help with injury-related depth issues. Ta’Amu most recently joined the team with both Tim Boyle and David Blough dealing with minor injuries, but wasn’t needed for last Saturday’s preseason game against the Steelers.
For subscribers: Lions camp observations: T.J. Hockenson shines, Penei Sewell holds his own
Leake’s release came hours after Lions coach Dan Campbell said he wanted to get a closer look at running back Craig Reynolds in the preseason finale. Another camp addition, Reynolds has shined with his limited opportunities the past week, rushing for 88 yards and a pair of touchdowns with 11 carries through two preseason games.
The Lions will play host to the Indianapolis Colts on Friday in the preseason finale for both teams. The final roster cuts, to 53 players, must be filed with the league by 4 p.m. on Aug. 31.