Backup quarterback swap: Lions sign Sudfeld, waive Blough

Detroit News

Allen Park — A day after establishing the team’s initial 53-man roster, the Detroit Lions are swapping out backup quarterbacks.

The Lions signed former Eagles and 49ers quarterback Nate Sudfeld and waived David Blough, the team announced.

Lions coach Dan Campbell explained what the team was looking for in a backup on Monday.

“I think it’s what anybody would think for the position,” Campbell said. “Is it somebody we know can come in and, if something happens, that they can steer the ship and they can sustain and win some games? If you lose your starter for two or three games, can they win those games for you is what you’ve got to decide. So that’s what we’re wrestling with.”

A sixth-round draft pick out of Indiana in 2016, Sudfeld spent his rookie season with Washington, but was inactive during each of the team’s 16 regular season contests.

Joining the Eagles practice squad the following year, he wound up spending three seasons with the franchise, appearing in four games in relief. In those contests, the 6-foot-6 Sudfeld completed 25-of-37 passes for 188 yards, one touchdown and one interception.

Most recently, Sudfeld was the third man on the San Francisco 49ers’ depth chart, behind Trey Lance and Jimmy Garoppolo. He became expendable when the 49ers restructured Garoppolo’s contract this week after failing to find a taker on the trade market.

In the preseason, Sudfeld completed 26-of-38 for 254 yards, two touchdowns and an interception.

The move comes at the expense of Blough, ending his three-year run as a member of the Lions’ active roster. He had been able to fend off Tim Boyle in an offseason competition for Detroit’s backup job, but comments from Campbell made it clear the team was on the hunt for a potential upgrade at that spot.

In Detroit’s three preseason games, Blough completed 62.2% of his passes with two touchdowns and one interception, posting a 76.1 passer rating.

An emotional Blough, speaking in the locker room after Sunday’s preseason finale, gave a sense he knew his offseason performance might not have been enough to stick.

“Look, I just want to go out and score points, I want to lead those guys, I want to stand back there and win with our team,” he said. “They have decisions they have to make. It’s hard. I just appreciate them having me here and having a chance to play ball. Jared (Goff) and I were kind of talking about it, I have no regrets.”

Twitter: @Justin_Rogers

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