Cameron Sutton is immediately one of the oldest players on the Detroit Lions roster, and he’s ready to take on a leadership role.
The Detroit Lions made a significant splash on the first day of NFL free agency, signing cornerback Cameron Sutton to a three-year, $33 million deal ($22.5 million guaranteed). It was a nice move to address the biggest need on the roster.
At 28 years old. Sutton becomes the second-oldest player on the Lions’ roster (behind left tackle Taylor Decker). On the defensive side of the ball, recently re-signed linebacker Alex Anzalone matches Sutton’s six seasons in the NFL.
Sutton stepped into a bigger role in the Steelers’ secondary over the last two seasons, starting 31 games as he played very effectively mostly on the outside. He naturally becomes the No. 1 corner in Detroit, by paycheck, skill and veteran status, with locking down the opponent’s best receiver his primary duty.
Sutton drew notoriety from the Lions’ beat during his introductory presser on Thursday, shaking hands and introducing himself to the reporters in attendance before he spoke. But what he had to say was substantive.
Cameron Sutton more than ready to take on leadership role with the Lions
Sutton noted the influence of the key people in Pittsburgh–head coach Mike Tomlin, former general manager Kelvin Colbert and the Rooney family–on him as a leader.
Via Dave Birkett of The Detroit Free Press, Sutton is ready to take on a clear role as a veteran leader for the Lions, beyond what he does on the field.
"It’s going to be just beyond the game, the production of the game, all those values of the game, but just really embracing that leadership role,” Sutton said. “I’ve been around plenty of great leaders just throughout the years, even in my own position group who have really molded my game, really molded how I carry myself as an individual. … And just really embracing that role.”"
Sutton also said the Lions were the first team to contact him as the free agent negotiation window opened, and (via 97.1 The Ticket) “they came strong, man.” So what he noticed from a distance became personal as the team pursued him aggressively, and he was sold quickly on what’s being built in Detroit.