shocking:Unexpectedly, $42 million former Eagles star joins the..

Unexpectedly, $42 million former Eagles star joins the Lions before the Super Bowl.

Former Philadelphia Eagles tight end Zach Ertz is pulling a surprise by signing with the Detroit Lions just weeks before the Super Bowl. Ertz is hoping for a chance to play for a second Super Bowl ring, but the Lions will need to defeat the San Francisco 49ers.

Zach Ertz (@ZERTZ_86) / X

It is a bit of a surprise move given there is so little time remaining in the season. With Ertz remaining unsigned, it looked as though the playmaker would wait until the offseason to join a new team. Ertz will still have another chance to sign elsewhere once the NFL playoffs end.

“Three-time Pro Bowl TE Zach Ertz is signing with the Lions, per sources,” NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero detailed in a January 22, 2024 message on X. “Ertz will start out on the practice squad, with plans to potentially elevate him for the NFC Championship Game. A boost for the final stretch.”

Ertz began the season on the Arizona Cardinals roster before being released on November 30. It remains to be seen how much of an impact Ertz can make in Detroit. The former Pro Bowler last played on October 22.
The tight end has an impressive resume as a three-time Pro Bowler. Eagles fans will remember Ertz played a key role on the Philly team that won the Super Bowl during the 2017 season. Ertz posted 7 catches for 67 yards and a touchdown in the team’s Super Bowl win over the Patriots.
The news comes as Lions tight end Sam LaPorta has been dealing with a knee injury. LaPorta has still been able to play in the postseason, so signing Ertz is likely more of an insurance policy for Detroit.
Since his release, Ertz had been linked to multiple teams, including the Eagles. If the Lions lose to the 49ers in the NFC Championship, Ertz’s deal with Detroit would be for just one game given the star is joining the practice squad. Ironically, the 49ers were a team Ertz was connected with earlier this season.
“49ers are believed to be one of the teams most interested in TE Zach Ertz, who may wait until next week to decide,” The Athletic’s Matt Barrows detailed in a December 6 message on X. “SF theoretically could put TE Ross Dwelley (high-ankle sprain) on IR to make room. Imagine Shanahan is all for adding a veteran weapon with a SB ring to the roster.”
Ertz signed a five-year, $42 million contract extension with Philadelphia in 2016. The Eagles later traded Ertz to the Cardinals in October 2021.

ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported on December 1 that Philly was interested in a potential reunion with Ertz. The move would have made some sense, especially with Dallas Goedert dealing with a forearm injury. Instead, Ertz opted to make a late postseason move by signing with Detroit.

“Former Cardinals’ TE Zach Ertz cleared waivers today and is now free to sign with any team, per source,” Schefter detailed at the time on X. “The Eagles, a franchise for which Ertz needs 11 catches to pass Harold Carmichael and become their all-time leading receiver, are expected to have interest in re-signing him.”

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