Detroit Lions: Strengthening the secondary via free agency

FOXBOROUGH, MA - JANUARY 21: Malcolm Butler
FOXBOROUGH, MA - JANUARY 21: Malcolm Butler /

The Detroit Lions have been looking for a consistent defensive back to bring better balance to the secondary. Is Malcolm Butler the guy?

He stands 5’ 11” and is considered one of the top defensive backs in free agency. And the Detroit Lions should be interested in acquiring his services this offseason. Malcolm Butler, an eight-year pro amassed 55 solo tackles, 1.0 quarterback sack and two interceptions.

Butler is not quite a shutdown cornerback. But what he is, is very good and very consistent. The latter is something Lions’ defensive backs Jamal Agnew, D.J. Hayden, Nevin Lawson and Teez Tabor have not been able to achieve.

Yet, there are questions. Like why did he get benched by the New England Patriots before the Super Bowl? Only Butler and the Patriots coaching staff knows for sure. And they have moved on from the subject.

Publicly, Butler has never been viewed as a bad apple. Actually, his former defensive coordinator and current Detroit Lions head coach Matt Patricia, really likes Malcolm Butler. He would know exactly what Butler can and can not bring to the team as they spent several season together. As well as any character issues he may or may not have.

It’s hard for Detroit Lions fans not to imagine a solid defensive back opposite Pro Bowler Darius Slay. The veteran corner stands 6’ 0” had 55 solo tackles, zero quarterback sacks along with eight interceptions in 2017. He is a shutdown corner and does not get picked on by opposing quarterbacks.

If the Lions choose to go after Butler in free agency, the Detroit secondary would be a nightmare. That is a great problem to have given the quarterbacks in the NFL Central. As they face those teams twice a season.

Only Detroit Lions general manager Bob Quinn, and Patricia know for sure the direction they will go in free agency. Adding Butler would be a smart almost no-brainer move. Given his production and importance to the New England Patroits.

I realize there are other areas of concern the Lions need to address. But, it is not every year a prime corner hits the open market. Not to mention both the general manager and head coach knows personally. 

Next: Detroit Lions NFL Combine and draft primer - Running backs

Malcolm Butler would give the Detroit Lions secondary something it sorely needs. A consistent defensive back opposite Darius Slay. Which in turn would bring better balance to the entire Detroit defense.