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If having former Florida Gators football players suiting up for the Detroit Lions sounds odd, well, that’s because the team has not had one on its roster since 2009.
However, over the last 15 days, the Lions have signed not one but three former Gators and gone about doing so in a wide variety of ways.
On April 25, Detroit acquired 2015 undrafted free agent punter Kyle Christy after bringing him to the Motor City for a tryout. Christy had numerous tryouts last offseason but never caught on with a team.
Last Thursday, the Lions announced that they signed wide receiver Andre Caldwell, a nine-year veteran who spent the last four seasons catching passes from Peyton Manning with the Denver Broncos, to a one-year deal.
The acquisition who may make the most immediate impact is linebacker Jon Bostic, whom Detroit picked up in a trade with the New England Patriots on Monday.
A second-round pick in the 2013 NFL Draft, Bostic spent three seasons with the Chicago Bears before being traded to New England for a sixth-round pick just one month into the 2015 season. He played in 11 games but barely registered any stats for the Patriots after totaling 140 tackles over 29 games with the Bears.
Bostic is a low-risk, high-reward acquisition for the Lions, which only gave up a conditional seventh-round pick in the deal.
So just like that, in a matter of two weeks, there went from being no Florida players in Detroit to three. Whether the influx of Gators will help the Lions, well, that certainly remains to be seen.