How Former Utah DT John Penisini Fits In With Detroit Lions

May 20, 2020, 10:29 AM
(Photo by Tom Walko/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)...
(Photo by Tom Walko/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
(Photo by Tom Walko/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – Former Utah defensive tackle John Penisini has a chance to prove himeself as a rookie for the Detroit Lions.

Penisini was taken by the Lions in the sixth round with the 197th overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft.

The Lions play a 4-3 defensive scheme with two defensive tackles. According to Ourlads.com, Penisini is the third string left defensive tackle behind Danny Shelton and Olive Sagapolu.

He will wear No. 91 for the Lions.

Other Defensive Tackles On Roster

Danny Shelton joined the Lions as a free agent and signed a two-year deal with Detroit during the off-season. Olive Sagapolu is entering the final year of his contract with the Lions. He was an undrafted free agent who signed with the Green Bay Packers last season.

On the right side for defensive tackles, John Atkins will be in the final year of his contract with the Lions. Kevin Strong Jr. has two years remaining on his current deal. Nick Williams recently signed a deal with the Lions as a free agent which is a one year deal with an option for a second year.

The Lions did not re-sign Damon Harrison and A’Shawn Robinson and allowed them to enter the free agent market.

Penisini was the only defensive tackle that the Lions selected in the 2020 NFL Draft.

Contract Details

Penisini recently signed his rookie contract with the Lions. According to Spotrac.com, Penisini will make $3,466,176 through the course of his rookie contract. His signing bonus is $171,176. His base salary this season will be $610,000 and will use $652,794 of the Lions’ cap this season.

The former Ute is the second Lions draft pick to come to a contract agreement. Fourth round pick in Offensive guard Logan Stenberg was the first to sign his contract. Penisini is the only Utah player that was drafted that has signed their rookie contract.


One thing that Penisini has done throughout his entire college career is work for everything that he has been given. It has led him to being drafted in the sixth round. You can bet that he will work his way up the depth chart.

Despite being projected as a third string defensive tackle, Penisini will work his way to the top. The contracts of the guys that are ahead of him will favor his future with the Lions because he will work for everything he has been given.

I think that Penisini will be a second string defensive tackle who is receiving meaningful reps in the NFL by his second season in 2021.

Trevor Allen is a Utah Utes Insider for KSLSports.com and host of the Crimson Corner podcast. Follow him on Twitter: @TrevorASportsYou can download and listen to the podcast, here.

  • Utah Utes Scoreboard

  • Utah Utes Team Leaders

  • Utah Utes Standings

Locals In the NFL

quarterback signs autographs at NFL Pro Bowl...
Jeremy Mauss

Putting Draft Picks On The Line Would Make Pro Bowl More Meaningful

Unrivaled has an idea to make the Pro Bowl a whole lot better.
1 day ago
Michelle Bodkin

Utes Making Positive Impressions Early At The East-West Shrine Bowl

Tavion Thomas and Mohamoud Diabate are representing the Utes this week at the East-West Shrine Bowl and making some positive impressions.
1 day ago
Chandler Holt

Ravens QB Tyler Huntley Named To AFC Pro Bowl Roster

Former Utah Ute Tyler Huntley will participate in the Pro Bowl on Sunday. He was named to the team as an injury alternate.
2 days ago
Kyle Ireland

Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes Praises Marcus Kemp For AFC Championship Performance

Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes praised former Layton Lancers standout Marcus Kemp for his play during the AFC Championship against the Bengals.
3 days ago
Kyle Ireland

10 Local NFL Players, Coaches Reach Super Bowl LVII With Championship Sunday Wins

Here is how all of the players with ties to the state of Utah performed during Championship Sunday in the NFL Playoffs.
4 days ago
Kyle Ireland, KSL Sports and The Associated Press

NFL Legend Steve Young Jokes Amid 49ers’ Dire QB Situation In NFC Championship

NFL legend Steve Young commented on the 49ers' dire QB situation during the NFC Championship game against the Eagles.
4 days ago

Sponsored Articles

High angle view of the beautiful Rose Bowl Stadium...
KSL Digital Sales

How to Prepare for the 2023 Rose Bowl

Everything you need to know to plan your 2023 Rose Bowl trip in Pasadena, California. This year, the Utes will face Penn State.
KSL Digital Sales

Notable Moments From The Utah Jazz Season… So Far

At the beginning of the season, the Utah Jazz were second to last. Now they rank in the top 10 teams in the Western Conference.
Football soccer ball on grass field on stadium...
KSL Digital Sales

Everything You Need to Know to Watch the 2022 World Cup

Find out where and when to watch the upcoming games and final match for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, including where to find live updates.
ksl sports logos...
KSL Sports

KSL Sports Newsletter: Sign Up Now

Sign up today for the KSL Sports newsletter. Get the latest Utah sports news delivered to your inbox.
KSL Sports

Win Tickets Wednesday: Jimmy Buffett

Get your Hawaiian shirts ready.
Iron Maiden tour...
KSL Sports

Win Tickets Wednesday: Iron Maiden

Iron Maiden returns to Utah in 2022 with The Legacy of the Beast tour.
How Former Utah DT John Penisini Fits In With Detroit Lions