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Lions move big tight end Michael Williams to tackle

michaelwilliams Getty Images

As a seventh-round draft pick last season, Lions tight end Michael Williams never got on the field. He’ll try to earn some playing time this year at a new position, as the Lions have confirmed that Williams has been moved from tight end to offensive tackle.

“He’s a guy with size and he’s athletic and it’s one of those things, too, where the guy had to fight to keep his weight down,” Lions head coach Jim Caldwell said of Williams. “He came back and he was somewhere in the neighborhood of 300 pounds. You don’t see too many 300-pound tight ends. He’s a big guy.”

Caldwell plans to use his tight ends — first-round pick Eric Ebron and holdovers Brandon Pettigrew and Joseph Fauria — as receivers first and blockers second, and that means Williams wasn’t going to be a good fit in the new offense. So the 6-foot-6 Williams says he’s working on getting stronger and trying to make the team as a lineman.

“We’ve been talking about this for a while it was just up to me to make that decision,” Williams said. “I just felt like I could prolong my career this way. My style of tight end has not been used as much in the NFL. It’s just about me building my muscles and not just trying to gain weight. You have to gain the right weight.”

Williams has an uphill battle to make the Lions’ 53-man roster. But changing positions gives him a chance.

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11 Responses to “Lions move big tight end Michael Williams to tackle”
  1. steelerben says: May 21, 2014 2:33 PM

    J’Marcus Russell could learn a thing or two from this kid.

  2. godofwine330 says: May 21, 2014 2:35 PM

    Flexibility gives him the chance to at the very least back up both positions. I hope he makes it.

  3. thestrategyexpert says: May 21, 2014 2:41 PM

    If he can make the roster that’s great, if not then I want to get a reconciliation/closure moment from the GM that made the pick that thought it was such a great pick at the time. But they already seem to be high on UDFA Cornelius Lucas not to mention the vet Hilliard and FA Shugarts beyond the 2 starters, so Michael Williams has tough numbers to crack at OT just like he did at TE. He could be a good cut and waiver wire pickup for somebody else that wants a young TE draft pick that hasn’t even taken a snap yet.

    This team needing a very good GM very badly is the bigger issue topic that still needs to be addressed at some point.

  4. hyzers says: May 21, 2014 2:42 PM

    He never got on the field because he broke his wrist and had to get surgery.

  5. dcredz says: May 21, 2014 2:47 PM

    @thestrategyexpert,

    You want a reconciliation/closure moment from the GM because a seventh round pick didn’t pan out? A seventh round pick that was a fit for the offense that the team no longer uses?

    Hold your breath.

  6. zingo1978 says: May 21, 2014 3:09 PM

    I think when they drafted him they even said that Tackle was a more likely spot for him in the long run.

  7. chinahand11 says: May 21, 2014 3:26 PM

    Nice to see a fat guy doing good.

  8. sandersmarcus10 says: May 21, 2014 3:51 PM

    Still dont get this pick of a TE, you already have 2 productive TE’s, Lions needed back end help for the front LB, CB or Safety

  9. dldavidlong says: May 21, 2014 5:30 PM

    watch out for the tackle eligible play

  10. bassplucker says: May 21, 2014 7:26 PM

    So this Mike Williams is even bigger than the first Mike Williams they had. I think I’m getting it.

  11. jayesix says: May 22, 2014 5:56 PM

    Tackle eligible

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