The Las Vegas Raiders announced on Thursday afternoon they have signed former Ohio State linebacker Darron Lee to a one-year contract.
A first-round pick of the New York Jets in the 2016 NFL Draft, the 6-foot-1 and 232-pound Lee was the lowest-graded inside linebacker in the NFL during his rookie season. He then missed four games during the 2018 season after being suspended for a PED violation.
The Jets declined Lee’s fifth-year option in 2019 and subsequently traded him to the Kansas City Chiefs, with whom he won Super Bowl LIV, though he was inactive for the game. After becoming a free agent, Lee was again suspended four games for an unspecified rules violation.
Once Lee was reinstated, he latched on with the Buffalo Bills. He spent most of the season on the practice squad but was elevated to the active roster for the Week 10 and Week 12 games against the Arizona Cardinals and Los Angeles Chargers.
The 26-year-old Lee has appeared in 58 games across five seasons in the NFL, recording 260 tackles, 11 pass break ups, four sacks, three interceptions, two forced fumbles and one defensive touchdown. He now joins former Ohio State cornerback Damon Arnette, defensive tackle Johnathon Hankins and long snapper Liam McCullough on the Raiders’ roster.
A former four-star athlete from New Albany, Ohio, Lee was named the defensive MVP of the 2015 and guided the Buckeyes to the inaugural College Football Playoff National Championship that same season. He recorded 145 tackles, 27 tackles for loss, 11 sacks, five pass break ups three forced fumbles, three interceptions and two fumble recoveries, which he returned for touchdowns in victories over Navy and Michigan, during his three seasons in Columbus from 2013-15.
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