Detroit Lions defensive notes
Basic shock value aside, here are big issues going into 2020 …
Much of the Detroit Lions defense is signed for multiple years but some big decisions loom.
First and foremost, what is going to happen with cornerback Darius Slay? He is under contract (info from Spotrac) for one more year but the Detroit Lions haven’t seemed worried about re-signing their top man-CB. Will a trade happen prior to the draft or regular season?
Do they keep Jarrad Davis who has been a liability in almost every way despite very good athleticism? He is a free agent after 2020 unless they opt into his fifth-year clause. The linebacker corps has been an area of weakness in games but head coach Matt Patricia says that he likes the group.
Damon Harrison is mulling over a possible decision to retire at 31 years old and with the interior of the defensive line having had so many problems, it would be difficult to imagine the Lions passing on help there in free agency, the draft, or both.
Safety Tavon Wilson, who played extra minutes due to injury, is a better at-the-line player who can tackle but isn’t great as a cover man; he is also a free agent along with Miles Killebrew, a similar sort of linebacker-safety hybrid. That role is filled by Will Harris but there isn’t good depth with Wilson possibly leaving.
Backup safeties C.J. Moore and A.J. Howard are unproven commodities; Moore took 76 snaps in a Lions uniform in 2019.
In total, as expected after a defensive no-show in 2019, the Detroit Lions have a lot to worry about at every level of their defense.