Free agency continues to dominate the headlines as we are about a week and a half into the new league year. The Lions are still trying to put the pieces together for the 2016 season as they continue to add more players this past week.
Lions Sign Rafael Bush
The Lions signed former Saints safety Rafael Bush, Detroit was able to get him fairly cheap after he only managed to play one game last season before being placed on season-ending IR.
Bush’s deal is worth up to $2.4M for 1-year and is along the lines of a ‘prove it’ deal since he hasn’t been able to stay healthy the past 2 seasons. He’s expected to start at safety since the Lions lost Isa Abdul Quddus to the Dolphins last week, but Tavon Wilson could also be in the mix as well.
Detroit Misses Out
This past week, signing OT Russell Okung to a deal was Detroit’s biggest priority, but things didn’t go exactly as planned. On Thursday the Broncos were able to agree to terms on a 5-year deal with Okung, taking the best offensive tackle off the market.
Detroit also lost out on former Patriots DT Akiem Hicks who signed with the Bears on Monday. The Lions were considered the favourites to land Hicks, but once he visited with Bears, he never made it to Detroit for a visit.
The free agent market is thinning, and aside from Marvin Jones, the Lions have yet to make any big signings; this is a surprise to many since Detroit had freed up over $40M in cap space this offseason.
Best Remaining Free Agent Options for the Lions
Most of the top players have already signed with other teams, but there is still some talent available for the Lions to make a few key moves.
- Will Beatty
- Nate Chandler
- Byron Bell
- Jake Long
Now these may not be top shelf players, but it’s what remains at the position. Any of them would be able to give Detroit a boost on the offensive line.
- Alfred Morris
- LaGarrette Blount
Detroit needs a short yardage back to take over the role that Joique Bell played the past couple of seasons and it wouldn’t be a surprise if they added one in the near future or even in the draft.
- Patrick Robinson
- Brandon Boykin
- Leon Hall
- Jerraud Powers
With Mathis retiring, Detroit lacks veteran leadership among their CBs; I’d expect them to add someone in the next couple of weeks.