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Report: Lions sign pass rusher Phillip Hunt

Josh Katzenstein
The Detroit News
Phillip Hunt appeared in 22 games with the Eagles.

Hoping to find an inexpensive pass rusher before free agency begins on March 10, the Lions signed Phillip Hunt Thursday, according to an ESPN report.

Hunt has played in just 22 games — all with the Eagles — since going undrafted in 2009, but the Lions hope the hybrid linebacker and defensive end can add something to their defense in 2015.

Terms of Hunt's deal were not included in the report, and his agent did not immediately return a message.

In many ways, the Hunt signing is reminiscent of the Lions adding George Johnson and Darryl Tapp last year, two players available for minimum contracts that became key contributors for the No. 2 overall defense.

After being cut by the Browns as a rookie in 2009, Hunt spent the next two years in the Canadian Football League. The Eagles signed him in 2011, and in two years in Philadelphia, he played 22 games as a reserve and totaled three sacks. He was Tapp's teammate those two years in Philadelphia and played under defensive line coach Jim Washburn, who's now the Lions assistant defensive line coach.

Hunt tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his knee in August 2013, leading the Eagles to waive him. The Colts signed him in August 2014, but he was among the team's final cuts.

At 6-foot-1, 254 pounds, Hunt will likely compete for a special teams role with the Lions, but he has the versatility to play outside linebacker or defensive end.

jkatzenstein@detroitnews.com

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