It is no surprise that the Lions would look to make a move at defensive tackle considering the suspension to Ndamukong Suh and the aggravation of Nick Fairley’s foot injury. The team has announced the signing of defensive tackle Jovan Haye. What is surprising is that he comes in at the expense of cornerback Brandon McDonald who was released to free up a roster spot.
Tim Twentyman provides more info on Jovan Haye on DetroitLions.com:
Haye, most recently with the Titans in 2010, has played for the Panthers, Browns, Buccaneers and Titans over his seven-year career.
He was drafted by the Panthers in the sixth-round of the 2005 draft out of Vanderbilt.
From 2007-2009, he started 45 games for the Buccaneers and Titans. He had his best season in 2007 when he recorded six sacks with the Bucs.
He played in 14 games with the Titans last season with one start.
Haye signed a four-year, $16 million contract with Titans in 2009 but was waived in final cuts before this season began.
Chris Houston hasn’t practiced this week and figures to be out again after it was revealed his knee injury is to the MCL and not just a bump or bruise. Eric Wright and Aaron Berry got the start in New Orleans while McDonald and Alphonso Smith were the third and fourth corners. McDonald performed well enough in training camp to land a roster spot ahead of incumbent Nathan Vasher and saw playing time ahead of Alphonso Smith who saw quite a bit of the field last season. Now it looks like Alphonso Smith will be the regular nickel back this week.
Perhaps this move will turn out to be a one week deal. The Lions coaching staff might feel they can get by without McDonald while facing a rookie quarterback then re-evaluate the roster when Ndamukong Suh comes back from his suspension next week. Of course, the best situation would be that Chris Houston could actually play this week and that the coaching staff had decided Smith was worthy of jumping McDonald on the depth chart.