The Detroit Lions value culture fit very highly, in parallel with if not more than a player's talent. If someone is not deemed to be an ideal fit by the tandem of general manager Brad Holmes and head coach Dan Campbell, they will not be drafted or signed. It really is that simple, and any perception of position value or significant roster need will become secondary.
As Holmes said during his season-ending press conference, looking for the most talented player is easy, and a "prerequisite of evaluation" as it relates to the draft. That certainly applies to free agency too, even without a specific mention of it by Holmes in this case.
"We have to get past just looking for the most talented player," Holmes said. "In my opinion, that's the prerequisite of evaluation."That's what I'm saying about that 2021 draft class. That was very intentional to find those guys that had the intangibles. It's not like, 'Oh, we'll wait until the fourth round to pick a wide receiver. No, we wanted (Amon-Ra) St Brown. He had the intangibles that we were looking for to set our foundation."
In free agency, the Lions have placed a priority on retaining their own. Some notable outside signings were made last offseason, but they were deemed good all-around fits and they mostly worked out on the field too. Two of those outside signings, Graham Glasgow and Jaylen Reeves-Maybin, had played for the Lions before.
In Reeves-Maybin's case, he played under this regime in 2021 before leaving to sign with the Houston Texans in 2022. Glasgow was drafted by the previous regime in 2016, before leaving to sign with the Denver Broncos in 2020.
It's possible some other former Lions could be on the radar to return in free agency this offseason, after spending some time away. It's not a long list of viable options, per se, but these three former Lions could be brought back if circumstances push toward it.