Quarterback Dan Orlovsky made the bold prediction last year that Theo Riddick would catch 50 passes and be a Darren Sproles-like threat in the Detroit Lions' offense.

Riddick didn't quite reach those levels in his second NFL season, but Orlovsky might have been a year premature in his forecast.

The Lions cut Reggie Bush on Wednesday, in a cost-cutting move that saved them $1.7 million in salary cap space and should open up more playing time for Riddick.

Last year, Riddick, a sixth-round pick out of Notre Dame in 2013, played mostly as an injury fill-in for Bush. He caught 34 passes for 316 yards and was used sparingly in the running game, but Lions coach Jim Caldwell said at the NFL combine last week that Riddick is ready for an expanded role this fall.

"It depends on what we want to do with him, but he's capable of carrying it more than what we gave to him," Caldwell said. "I think you can see his numbers, in terms of his out-of-the-backfield catching the ball, things of that nature, they jump out at you. So he's got a unique skill there. But he's also a good ball carrier. So we'll see how that goes."

The Lions' No. 3 running back behind Bush and Joique Bell to start last season, Riddick had just six offensive touches in the first five games before Bush's ankle injury opened the door to more playing time.