Thursday, March 12, 2009

D Back There? Anywhere?

I'm just getting back from the flu, so only a short one tonight. (note: thanks for the update that mere minutes after posting my blog and sending in my answers to COS, my FA pick for the Lions to go after was signed by another team. Such is life.)

As the Lions have been addressing different positions in free agency, one thing they have quietly done is once again attempt to solidify the defensive backfield in free agency.

At Safetey, the Lions have Bullocks inked as one starter, but Alexander is a question mark due to his neck injury last season. This leaves Kalvin Pearson and Stu Schweigert to attempt to compete for the spot at this point (unless you think Lamarcus Hicks will be showing a sudden increase in skills.) I like Pearson as the 3rd Safety and he played very well on special teams. In a starting role, I really only want to see him in there situationally on running downs as he seems to be a good hitter, and as a rotational guy.

Depending on how the battles at CB turn out (more on that in a minute) I can also see Anthony Henry in the mix. If he moves to Safety, then I see him being a definite starter there. That gives the Lions some great cushion -- assuming their other CB acquisitions come through -- at Safety. Bullocks, despite the coaching woes, was really showing up as a solid safety after coming back from his knee injury. He is one of the few talented young defensive players the Lions can count on. If Alexander, who was had a great rookie year, is able to come back from his injury then the Lions would have Henry, Bullocks, Alexander and Pearson at S for now -- and that would be a solid rotation there.

That, of course, depends on how the CB situation works out. In my opinion (since Travis "I get dragged 10 yards even when I am anywhere near the intended receiver - which isn't very often" Fisher doesn't count in my mind...) the Lions have Fowler, Robinson, Buchanon, and Smith fighting as starters at this point (along with Henry). I'm not as down on Keith Smith as many, and think he is in a make-it or break it year. Same with Robinson, although his is more of a make it as a backup/ST or be out football vs making it as a starter, or ending your career as a backup.

As it stands, I'd say at least 2 out of Fowler, Buchanon and Smith will beat out Henry to start at CB. If they don't, then either they are way worse than I thought or Henry isn't slowing down as quick as I thought, or both. Since this is my projection, I have Henry moving to S and Fowler and Buchanon winning out as starters, with Robinson and Smith as the reserves (Along with Henry sliding over from S, of course).

Unlike last year's backfield fix, this year they did not sign a guy on his way downside (Kelly) -- but traded for a guy (Henry) who would have been starting at CB or S for Dallas. Buchanon isn't a top tier CB, but he was a starter in Tampa, they wanted him back - but as a 3rd CB to give a younger guy (sheesh - he's only 28!) a chance...

In regards to FA and the draft, depending on where they see Henry going the Lions may need either another CB or S in the draft/FA yet. (preferably one who returns kicks. Cason better not be on the final roster!) The key is, that the Lions should be able to pass in a fairly CB/S thin draft if they feel other players are better. This team isn't on the cusp of a Superbowl run -- they have so many holes that no matter what they do in the draft, they are going to have parts of the team that end up "good enough for now" going into next season.

At this point, I think the defensive backfield is one of them. BTW - if they sign Carr as a CB/PR/KR, then I think that is a clear sign that Henry is headed to S.


Anonymous said...

I really can see them taking the kid out of Utah at pick 33 who plays CB but is being projected as a possible safety in the NFL. It really wouldn't surprise me to see the Lions pick Defense with the first three picks.


nubs said...

Phil Zaroo had someone find this link for him regarding Andre Smith and his pro day at The Tide. Like I said before, hide the small children's eyes.

CHIEFGER139 said...

come on
no faith in fisher??
actually they did very good with getting cb's in free agency and I think this no longer is our hugest weakness anymore. Somehow I still see our man fisher making the team and see him out there getting burned again. Think sony paid ford to put him out there for all the busted tv's he generates on sunday in the detroit area-he really helps there business. I immediately start fuming the moment I see him on the field-he did manage to make a few good plays last year-but most of them were for the opposing team-be thankful-before free agency after they dumped bodden he was our best cb we had-glad they immediately addressed this area.

RIP said...

The Jay Cutler situation is interesting to me in that is this the QB to lead us for the next 5 years or so. I would like to see a talented QB with leadership and character. His character, and perhaps "team player" and work ethics, may be considered a negative at this point. It would be a big negative if he does not go to work this coming week.

Ty said...


Pardon my ignorance, but who is "Fowler"? I don't know of a CB named Fowler, and checking the Lions' website I only see Eric Fowler, a practice-team WR. Are they converting that guy to CB, or did I miss a signing of a FA I don't know about?


DetFan1979 said...

Oops! Typo. Eric King is who I was intending to reference (reserve CB for the Titans who was playing very well before breaking his arm.)

Also was looking at WR last night and wrong name popped into my head as I was typing. As I may have mentioned, I'm still trying to get over the flu. :(

CHIEFGER139 said...

for what its worth79
i cant remember 1/2 the stuff either-been to much stress this year and the time change put chief in the wacko zone-so your forgiven and hopes like all of us im sure your in tip top condition-hope with all this responsibility you took on and your new highly aclaimed status you still plan lettin us low lifes like chief guess at the draft like last year , still let us guess at who makes the team and still lets us play fantasy football-sure if you are too busy with your other duties being the guy recognozed with the media guys now-i understand-plus i know you have a awsome family-buddy despite this suddenly recognized fame-take the wize chiefs advise-put family 1st over all this sudden fame you will never be sorry-if your plate is suddenly over loaded drop us all if you must-just look at that loving wife-those lovin kids and say to yourself they always come 1st-and god too-sure people like me will bug you for what we want-and now that your big time-they will bug you to keep up with them(sorry to say you will have to keep up with the up to guys like the church)-but always remember what comes 1st-im still sufferin cause i didnt realize it- your too good of a man to get stuck in the same trap give your all to your wife in kids-there already given there all to you lettin you mess with this lions stuff-believe me they are
signed the wize chief!!

Ty said...


No worries man, no worries.

I think that between Bullocks, Alexander, Pearson, and Schwigart we should be okay at safety; if Henry's a step slow at corner he'll still be better than stinkin' Fisher.


Isphet said...

Anyone can play safety if you get good pressure on the opposing QB. And no one can play it if you get none.

I think CB and safety are two of the most over-rated positions on a football team. it's very very rare to see a real impact guy at that position like a Polamalu or a Deion Sanders.

I just think that of every position on defense, the secondary relies very heavily on the front 7 to get pressure, or ANYONE in the secondary is screwed; I don't care who you are.