In the beginning of this article, I mentioned the four action plans the Lions can use to build their 2016 defensive roster. Here, I’ll break down which positions fit which plan.
Promote someone to starter from within their current roster.
The closest the Lions can come to promoting someone from within the roster would be having Bear Pascoe take over the blocking tight end duties. Aside from that, the Lions may try to have Corey Fuller or TJ Jones step up into a more prominent role on the offense. I don’t expect either of those things to happen though.
Re-sign a Free Agent Lion.
QB and WR are the positions that might be addressed through re-signings. Dan Orlovsky probably won’t be back next year, but if other needs are valued above quarterback in the draft, he could find himself on Detroit’s roster. Likewise, Lance Moore could be a cheap contingency plan to help the depth of the receiving corps. There’s probably about a 20% chance that either of these two are back next year though.
Address the position with a new face in Free Agency.
OG, OT, WR, TE, and RB could all be addressed in free agency this week and I expect at least three of these positions to be addressed in earnest. Tackle, running back and wide receiver would be the three positions where the focus will be on improving starters. Tight end and guard additions will be to add depth.
Address the position in the Draft.
WR, C, QB, TE are some positions Lions fans can expect to be addressed in the draft. If the Lions address the center position, it’ll be through the draft. Tight end is just as likely to be addressed in free agency as it is the draft. After that, you can expect the Lions to add a receiver and a quarterback in the later rounds of the draft.
The offense needs a lot of bodies to be better next year, but most of those additions aren’t going to be sexy. A developmental QB, a power RB, some offensive linemen and blocking tight end. That’s about it. But Detroit may make a splash with a talented receiver or two.