Lions finally part ways with Stephen Tulloch

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The Lions have finally made linebacker Stephen Tulloch’s departure from the team official.

Tulloch was told early in the offseason that he wasn’t in the team’s plans for the 2016 season, but they didn’t make any immediate move and paid Tulloch a $500,000 roster bonus in March. The team announced on Tuesday that they have released Tulloch, which makes him a free agent available to any team in the league. \

“As I have said numerous times since I became head coach of the Lions, Stephen Tulloch has been a consummate professional on and off the field,” coach Jim Caldwell said in a statement. “We thank him for his contributions to the Lions and the Detroit community and wish him the very best in all his future endeavors.”

A league source tells PFT that the Lions were waiting for Tulloch, who suffered a torn ACL in 2014 but played every game last season, to pass a physical and that they felt no rush to clear up his status because they had already paid out the roster bonus.

Tulloch spent five years with the Lions and started all 67 games he played with the team. He also played five years for the Titans after they made him a fifth-round draft pick in 2006.

UPDATE 5:23 p.m. ET: Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press reports Tulloch had arthroscopic surgery on his ankle, which accounts for the wait to pass a physical.

27 responses to “Lions finally part ways with Stephen Tulloch

  1. The Lions paid him $500,000 and then they fired him. I wish somebody would do that to me!

    The Lions didn’t mistreat Tulloch. That’s pretty obvious.

  2. broncos could use another middle linebacker. They have three unknowns fighting to play next to brandon marshall

  3. The Lions treated him very well, but the media here may not agree. The Lions have been bad, but they don’t always do the wrong thing.

  4. The torn ACL occurred when he landed after he jumped up and celebrated a great play vs Green Bay. As always, Green Bay could use an ILB (or two). Maybe if they can get him cheap, although they will probably go with youth again.

  5. Mr. LeBeau has a way with defensive personnel that do not have a lot of tread left on the tires….what do you say Stephen, maybe a return home for the 2016 season??

  6. Someone will likely pick him up. Pretty solid player not all that long ago. Likely a cheap add if nothing else than for an early down run stuffer.

  7. I think the Eagles will show interest. Reunite him with Jim Schwartz. Makes sense for both parties.

  8. The Lions let Tulloch go once he passed a physical because they were on the hook for a bigger cap hit if they cut him before he was cleared medically.

    I wish Detroit would bring Tully back. Class act and a solid run stopper. In a division with the Vikings and a potentially re-committed Eddie Lacy, being able to stop the run on early downs would be a good thing.

  9. Owners: Give us billions for stadiums we don’t have enough money !

    Lions Owner: Sure, toss away half a mil, who cares !!!!

  10. rukiddingme2014 says:
    Jul 5, 2016 8:35 PM
    I am not going to miss seeing him constantly blow his gap assignment. He seemed to always be out of position.

    R. U. Kidding me?

    He’s a profootball focus page of fame ILB. Great in coverage and stout against the run.

    The MIKE linebacker is the quarterback of the defense. He has the toughest job of the 4-3 linebackers, because he needs to be able to cover the most ground, whether that is sideline to sideline, or dropping into the deep middle. He also has the role, in most defenses, of calling defensive signals and making sure the defense is lined up in the right place and everybody is singing from the same hymn sheet.

    MLBs need to be more athletic than SAM linebackers, and they must have the best instincts and feel for the game of all because their positioning depends on the speed in which they can read and react to plays.

    Middle linebacker is also the position that can vary the most depending on specific schemes. In a defense that employs a Wide-9 defensive front (Which Tenesee and Detroit did) the MLB needs to be a much more aggressive and stout downhill thumper, because he must be able to play off the blocks of free offensive linemen coming at him. Conversely, in a Tampa-2 scheme the ability to drop deep down the field to cover passes is the most important skill.

    He did both very well for a long time. So he got smoked by A.P. Twice a year. Who hasn’t?

    Luke Kuechly, Patrick Willis and Stephen Tulloch are the prototype MLB’s.

  11. He played awesome when he was healthy. This past year he couldn’t cover anyone in pass plays. That’s not to discount what he contributed during his tenure with the Lions. Father Time catches up with everyone, super star and backup alike. Thanks for your play and leadership, Mr. Tulloch. Enjoy retirement.

  12. I’d love to see him on the Giants. Particularly since last season’s group would have given him precious few occasions to injure himself celebrating big plays.

  13. He was ok in coverage before the injury, horrible after it. It could be a further year removed from the injury that his coverage ability returns.

    Anyway he is still a superb run plugger and a superb locker room guy.

  14. OK Jerry…time to be a real GM, go and get this guy, you need his experience very badly as the middle of your defense has a huge hole

  15. @dontouchmyjunk says:
    Jul 5, 2016 7:05 PM

    215 is the Philly area code, Stephen. Just so you know.
    ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
    610 is the area code for Philly suburbs.

  16. The Lions aren’t exactly Mother Theresa reincarnated here — they waited to avoid paying Tulloch a $1.1M injury settlement.

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