The Lions continue to add depth to the roster with the signing of defensive end Everette Brown, linebacker Ashlee Palmer and tight end Will Heller to one-year deals Thursday.
Terms of the deals were unknown.
Brown, 24, was in for a visit Thursday and liked what he saw enough to put pen to paper on a new contract.
The Lions have a steady rotation of defensive ends with Kyle Vanden Bosch, Cliff Avril, Lawrence Jackson and Willie Young, but the way the team covets pass rushers, there’s always room to take a look at a defensive end.
He was a second-round pick by the Panthers in 2009 out of Florida State. He recorded six sacks in two seasons with the team before they released him in final cuts last September.
He played in three games for the Chargers last season.
Palmer, 25, has been with the Lions the last two seasons as a reserve linebacker and steady contributor on special teams. The Lions did not offer Palmer a restricted free agent tender when free agency started March 13, but always wanted to sign him back.
Palmer recorded eight tackles last season and provided fans some of the biggest hits of the season on special teams.
Heller, 31, who’s been with the Lions since 2009, was a salary cap casualty early last week as the team tried to get under the $120.6 million cap.
Heller is the third tight end behind Brandon Pettigrew and Tony Scheffler, but is the team’s primary blocking tight end or “H-back”. He caught six passes for 42 yards during the regular season and his lone touchdown of the season came in the Lions’ playoff loss to the Saints. He gives the Lions a reliable backup and a very deep tight end unit.
All three signing add depth to the roster, which is the main goal for Martin Mayhew and Co. right now.
The Lions also hosted cornerback and Pro Bowl coverage specialist Corey Graham for a visit Thursday.
Graham was primarily a special teams contributor for the Bears, playing in 16 games with no starts last season. He did have three interceptions in limited action on defense, though.
Tags: Ashlee Palmer, Evrette Brown, Will Heller
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