5 players the Detroit Lions must move on from in 2021

Jarrad Davis, Detroit Lions (Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports)
Jarrad Davis, Detroit Lions (Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports) /
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Jarrad Davis, Detroit Lions
Detroit Lions middle linebacker Jarrad Davis (Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports) /

#1. Jarrad Davis, Linebacker

While the addition of Marvin Jones might be one of former general manager Bob Quinn’s top moves, the drafting of linebacker Jarrad Davis could be considered one of his biggest misses. The Lions’ first-round selection out of Florida back in 2017, Davis has failed to live up to his lofty draft status in Detroit.

While his production has been solid, posting 259 total tackles over his first three seasons, Davis failed to turn into the defensive stalwart and centerpiece the Lions were hoping he’d become. Former head coach Matt Patricia actually called the 26-year old linebacker a cornerstone of his defense back in March. That was after refusing to pick up his fifth-year option for 2021.

And now, Patricia is gone and Davis is likely to follow. Despite being in a contract year, the Lions’ cornerstone has recorded his worst statistical season in the NFL yet. Davis has posted 44 tackles in only four starts. He was effectively benched after starting the first two games of the season and has only returned to the starting lineup over the last two matchups with interim head coach Darrell Bevell at the helm.

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Unless the new regime in Detroit features a crafty defensive coordinator who believes he can turn his career around, the Lions should move on from Jarrad Davis and the draft misstep they made four years ago with players like Wisconsin linebacker T.J. Watt, Washington safety Budda Baker, and Florida State running back Dalvin Cook still on the board.