Just In:”Is it possible that one of the Lions’ undrafted free agent signings could eventually replace…Read More.

“By the end of last season, Frank Ragnow’s injury report was long enough to need a deep breath to read through, listing issues with his toe, ankle, knee, and back. So, after the Lions’ NFC Championship Game loss to the 49ers, it wasn’t shocking when the three-time Pro Bowl center openly acknowledged the variety of injuries he faced. This led to some light speculation about retirement, which he quickly dismissed at the NFL Honors event.”

But it’s fair to say some years have been taken off Ragnow’s career. Entering his seventh season and nearing 28 years old (May 17), he’s probably not going to play until he’s 35. It may become a year-to-year proposition to keep playing, though he is under contract for three more years.

In a big picture sense, the Lions have to be considering how they’ll eventually replace Ragnow. Keeping one of th

e league’s best offensive lines strong as some guys age out will be a priority, and a potential successor at guard came via the draft (Christian Mahogany).

“The Lions didn’t draft a center or a player who could transition to that role. However, they did sign three undrafted free agent centers: Duke Clemens, Bryan Hudson, and Kingsley Eguakun. Notably, Clemens and Eguakun received a significant amount of guaranteed money in their contracts.”

The Lions might already be thinking about a succession plan for their Pro Bowl center, Frank Ragnow, given his recent injury history. Though Ragnow has dismissed retirement rumors, his list of injuries (toe, ankle, knee, back) and his age (nearing 28) suggest that his career could be shortened.


Considering Ragnow’s situation, Detroit’s focus is to maintain a strong offensive line. They drafted a guard, Christian Mahogany, to bolster the line, but haven’t selected a center. However, the Lions have signed three undrafted free agents (UDFAs) who could potentially take over for Ragnow in the future: Duke Clemens, Bryan Hudson, and Kingsley Eguakun. Clemens and Eguakun received significant guaranteed money, indicating Detroit’s interest in developing their skills.


Clemens, who ended his UCLA career with 34 consecutive starts at center, also has versatility to play guard. He earned a solid pass-blocking grade from Pro Football Focus last year, enhancing his roster prospects. Hudson, known for his strength and work ethic, played through a Grade 2 PCL strain last season. His 6-foot-4 frame and farm-grown strength fit well with head coach Dan Campbell’s style.

Eguakun, who received $245,000 in guaranteed money to sign with the Lions, brings significant experience as a three-year starter at Florida. His chances of being drafted were hindered by an ankle injury, but his guaranteed contract suggests Detroit sees potential in him.

While Ragnow is still a key component of the offensive line, the Lions are wise to explore potential successors among these UDFAs. They could become crucial in ensuring the offensive line remains strong as the team transitions from its current stars.

Related posts

Leave a Comment