In like a Buckaroo, out like a Lion

In like a Buckaroo, out like a Lion

In like a Buckaroo, out like a Lion

After being one of the final cuts of the preseason, Winnemucca’s Jace Billingsley was promoted to the Detroit Lions 53-man roster on Wednesday.

The Lowry High School and Eastern Oregon University graduate was on the practice squad for most 2016 season and was moved up to the 53-man roster for the final regular season game and playoff game.

Billingsley, in his second year with the Lions, has not yet played in a regular season game. Billingsley led Detroit in the preseason with 10 catches for 106 yards. He spent the first seven weeks of the 2017 season on the practice squad.

The Lions released punter Jeff Locke on Monday, opening up a roster spot that could be filled. Detroit is also looking to fill a wide receiver spot, after Golden Tate was hurt last week in a game with the Saints. He will likely not play this Sunday.

Billingsley joins a group of receivers on the roster along with Marvin Jones Jr., TJ Jones, Jared Abbrederis and Kenny Golladay.

“It was definitely a good thing for me to be on the practice squad,” Billingsley said in an interview with the Humboldt Sun in July. “I learned a lot and was able to improve in all the aspects of my game. Sitting on the sideline and watching your team play on Sunday is a little bit of torture. You see your improvement and just waiting for your shot to prove yourself. In some ways it is frustrating, but I don’t want to think of it in that way.”

Detroit hosts Pittsburgh on Sunday night at 5:30 p.m. The game is a national broadcast on NBC.

The Lions are currently 3-3 and in third place in the NFC North. Detroit has lost two games in a row.

After playing in prime time on Sunday night, Detroit will play on Monday Night Football on ESPN on Nov. 6 at Green Bay.

“I was always told I was too small and would never make it,” Billingsley said. “If you put your mind to it and work hard anything is possible. I love coming back to Winnemucca. I want to show the kids that there is a chance, no matter where you are from.”