As the draft excitement and news coming out of Allen Park dies down, so too does the Congregation step back in reflection. This summer, we’d like to hear your questions on Lions past and present, our experiences, memories — whatever you would like to read about in this slow news time until camp is upon us. Email firstname.lastname@example.org ! Look for the Congregation to return to the normal Friday publishing this week.
This week, the panel looks at a question that was asked in various forms by three of our readers. Contributing this week are:
1. David, John M., and Abdi V. all have variations of the following question: Which remaining free agents could be potential targets for the Lions? Is there anyone out there that seems like a good option, or is rumored to be heading to Detroit?
Al:Personally, I thought the one player still available who could help was Adam “Pacman” Jones, as the Lions are as deep as a puddle of rain at cornerback. Obviously, the Lions felt differently as the Bengals signed “Mr. Makin’ It Rain” to a two year deal.
So I think the Lions should look at Jamarcus Russ…No, I wouldn’t even joke about that.
We all know the Lions need help in defensive backfield. They know it too, which is why they are hosting former Giants safety C.C. Brown this week. (Al submitted this response before it was released the Lions were signing Brown ~ DF79) He’s just like the corners signed earlier in free agency,Chris Houston or Johnathan Wade. Former starters who were thought to not be good enough by their former teams.
At this point of the off season, players of that ilk are all you are going to find. They’re too old, not good enough, or some combination thereof. So there’s very few players on the market who could help the Lions…save for one.
I know he’s the obvious answer, but Bulluck is also the best answer. He knows Jim Schwartz’s system, should have a couple of decent years left and the Lions have a huge need at linebacker. Bulluck is more than worth a flier.
Other than the obvious signing of Bulluck, I’m thinking the Lions are lying in wait. They’ll hold off till they get closer to training camp, or even in midst of camp, and then sign a veteran given his walking papers by the Turk. For that matter, a player like Bullock may want to wait until camp is well underway before signing, if only to avoid two-a-days.
NetRat: While just about everyone is certain the Lions aren’t done yet, there also aren’t that many options out there. I went through this site and threw out all the RFA’s, guys already signed or franchised tagged, and stopped looking on page 4 when I came to Dre Bly. Many of the UFA’s not signed are kickers, guys that couldn’t pass a physical at this point in time, guys like T.O. that the Lions won’t sign, and guys that don’t fit the system the Lions are implementing. Keith Bulluck, if/when he can pass a physical, is a potential candidate, though I am by no means sure the Lions will even make a move at LB.
Once you get too far down the 4 star list you run into the “would they be a better option then the current potentials already on the roster?” thing. After all, they wouldn’t even be free agents right now if they were still good and in their prime. What it comes down to is this (for me), unless an injury occurs, or unless a currently signed player is found to be seriously wanting before summer camp gets here, the potential for Lions moves are very limited, to the point of almost being unlikely. Once camp starts, and enough time goes by to see who on the team is healing okay, who is not, and how well the unsigned guys that were injured are healing up, maybe then a move or two could be forthcoming.
Finally, after cutdown at the end of camp, another round of moves may occur (last year there were 5 players that were signed and then remained on the team for the season opener in the final 3 weeks of preseason).
DetFan1979: I’ll plug NetRat’s blog here, as I think he has some info in his latest post that makes how teams approach free agency, especially right now, a little clearer. “the ranking of players on the roster, on other teams, and not on any team continues.” In looking things over, I just don’t see anyone out there right now that is a big upgrade in current talent/potential than what is on the roster. I’m sure that, just like last year, the Lions will add some late camp-cuts that they like form other rosters after seeing what the guys they had in camp were able to do.
Keith Bulluck is almost being listed as a given to come in at LB for the Lions. I’m not convinced. They already have three guys coming off ACL’s and I think the chances of Bulluck coming to Detroit are directly linked to how Dizon, Follett, Johnson, et al. perform for the Lions in OTA’s and early in camp for 2-a-days. IF they don’t feel comfortable and Bulluck is healthy, then they may give him a call. But IF the Lions like what is happening with their young guys, don’t be surprised if it doesn’t happen.
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