Hunter Bryant Released by Lions on Eve of NFL Draft

The former UW tight end is now looking for new pro football home.
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By now, Hunter Bryant is certainly no fan of the NFL draft.

A year ago, he went through its seven rounds without being drafted, a surprising and disheartening experience for the big tight end from the University of Washington.

On Wednesday, the Detroit Lions cut the 6-foot-2, 239-pound Bryant on the eve of pro football's big talent grab with a non-football injury designation.

The former Huskies tight end was the victim of a new coaching staff looking to open a roster spot.

The previous regime liked him so much it had signed Bryant to the most bonus money of any undrafted free agent last year. Those coaches hung on to him even after a nagging hamstring injury and then a concussion in practice cost him much of the regular season. 

Making his pro debut in December, Bryant appeared in five games for the Lions and caught one pass for 44 yards.

The Issaquah, Washington, product had the unquestioned talent to advance to the NFL, but he failed to get drafted because of concerns over his lengthy injury history at the UW, which involved a pair of knee surgeries.

For Detroit, Bryant's ouster represents a total roster purge of the four Huskies it had at the beginning of last season. The Lions previously released wide receiver Marvin Hall, cornerback Marcus Trufant and defensive tackle Danny Shelton, each of whom has found a new NFL team.

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