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Lions activate Justin Coleman, promote Isaac Nauta

Justin Rogers
The Detroit News

The Detroit Lions are getting back a key defensive piece ahead of Sunday's tilt with the Indianapolis Colts, activating cornerback Justin Coleman from injured reserve. 

Signed as a free agent in 2019, Coleman led the Lions in defensive snaps last season as the team's starting nickel corner. In 16 games (11 starts), he recorded 54 tackles, 13 pass breakups, one interception and three forced fumbles. 

Cornerback Justin Coleman

Coleman has been out of action since suffering an hamstring strain against Chicago in the season opener. He was placed on injured reserve the following week, returning to practice last Thursday. 

In addition to Coleman's activation, the Lions also announced tight end Isaac Nauta has been signed off the practice squad. A seventh-round pick out of Georgia in 2019, Nauta had been temporarily elevated off the practice squad each of the past two weeks, seeing 24 snaps in those two games. 

Tight end Isaac Nauta

To clear the needed space on the roster, the Lions released running back Bo Scarbrough. A mid-season signing last year, Scarbrough filled in admirably while Kerry Johnson was out with a knee injury. In six games, Scarbrough rushed for 377 yards on 89 carries, scoring one touchdown. 

Scarbourgh spent the start of this season on injured reserve and had just been activated ahead of last Sunday's game against the Atlanta Falcons. His release comes a day after the team announced it was re-signing running back Jonathan Williams, who spent training camp with the team this year. 

Williams, along with defensive end Everson Griffin, who was acquired in a trade from Dallas earlier in the week, won't count against the Lions roster until they clear COVID-19 protocols early next week. At that time, the Lions will need to clear two additional roster spots.