What can Malcolm Brown add to the Detroit Lions?
The Detroit Lions signed Los Angeles Rams running back Malcolm Brown to an offer sheet this week. What can he add to the Motor City?
The Detroit Lions appear to have found a future star at running back last season when they traded up in the second round of the 2018 NFL Draft to select Auburn’s Kerryon Johnson. And despite cracking the century rushing mark twice in his rookie year, Johnson only played in 10 games total due to a knee injury.
Injuries will be the young running back’s biggest obstacle to overcome as he has an extensive injury history reaching all the way back to his days in high school. But the Lions knew what they were getting into with Johnson. And they also know they can not rely on him as a workhorse back and they must have a Plan B.
The Lions were expected to fill that need this offseason. The team re-signed veteran running back Zach Zenner to a one-year deal earlier this month. Zenner played well in Johnson’s absence at the end of last season, racking up 237 rushing yards and three touchdowns in their final four games.
Now, Detroit has taken another step in an effort to secure that position. On Tuesday it was reported that the Lions had signed Los Angeles Rams running back Malcolm Brown to an offer sheet. Brown is a restricted free agent that the Rams opted to tender at his original-round level only.
Because Brown was an undrafted free agent signing out of Texas back in 2015, the Lions could add him to their roster without having to give any compensation to the Rams. Los Angeles now has five days to match Detroit’s offer in order to keep Brown.
The Detroit Lions adding a career-backup like Malcolm Brown is all about potential. The 25-year old has been in the league for four seasons now and has started in just one game. But he is coming off his best year as a professional, rushing for a career-high 4.9 yards a carry for a total of 212 yards on 43 attempts.
In Detroit, the 5-foot-11, 222-pound Brown would likely fill a similar role to the one that LeGarrette Blount did last season for the Lions. The 32-year Blount is currently a free agent.