The Lions signed nine players to futures contracts. The typically non-guaranteed minimum deals are for next offseason, ensuring the player a spot on the team’s 90-man roster.
Eight of the nine players finished the year on the team’s practice squad: Tight ends Kennard Blackman and Khari Lee, running back Mike James, linebacker Steve Longa, wide receiver Andrew Turzilli, defensive back Charles Washington and offensive linemen Matt Rotheram and Brandon Thomas.
Longa received another contract offer during the season, but opted to stay with the Lions when the team matched the money. Thomas was acquired via a preseason trade when the team shipped wide receiver Jeremy Kerley to the San Francisco 49ers.
The team also signed former Packers wide receiver Jared Abbrederis.
A fifth-round draft pick out of Wisconsin in 2014, Abbrederis played in 15 games for Green Bay the past two seasons, catching 10 passes for 119 yards. He also had six catches for 69 yards in two playoff games as a rookie in 2015.
He was released by the Packers in October with an injury settlement (thigh).