Lions sign TE John Madsen

The Detroit Lions added veteran tight end John Madsen, clearing a spot for the newcomer by releasing wide receiver Kole Heckendorf, according to the Detroit News.

Madsen played for the Cleveland Browns last season after a stint in the UFL with the Las Vegas franchise. Previously, he spent nearly three seasons with the Oakland Raiders. He made the team in 2006 as an undrafted free agent from Utah, where he originally was a wide receiver. Madsen has appeared in 35 career games with five starts, all in Oakland. He had 19 career catches for 248 yards and two touchdowns.

Heckendorf spent the second half of last season on the practice squad of the Lions.

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