Marshon Lattimore trade would be worthwhile offseason gamble for Lions

The Detroit Lions are clearly in the market for a cornerback, and a trade for Marshon Lattimore looks to be a worthwhile gamble.
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The Detroit Lions are surely in the cornerback this offseason, it's just a matter of what is done to bolster the depth chart.

ESPN's Jeremy Fowler reported the Lions are in the market to add a "high-end" corner, with subsequent mention of a name Lions' coaches know well.

"Several teams believe Saints corner Marshon Lattimore -- whose base salary is a paltry $1.2 million due to a restructure -- is also available via a trade, and there's intrigue on Bucs cornerback Carlton Davis III."

It's worth noting Lattimore has a $13.79 million roster bonus that triggers the week before the regular season starts. The dead money hit for the Saints also makes a trade most likely to happen after June 1. But the Lions have plenty of cap space to take on the total cost attached to Lattimore.

Over the last two seasons Lattimore has played in just 17 games, missing time with a lacerated kidney in 2022 and an ankle injury in 2023. So it's possible the Saints see him as being in decline at age-27 (28 in May), as he posted a 67.4 grade from Pro Football Focus last season.

In spite of the recent negatives, Lattimore would make a lot of sense for the Lions.

Trading for Marshon Lattimore would make a lot of sense for the Lions

The Lions won't get someone like L'Jarius Sneed without coughing up notable draft capital and a big contract , which increases the risk. Lattimore will not cost as much.

A trade for Lattimore could offer the Lions a top option at a cheaper price, and it'd be a move that fits a pattern for Brad Holmes. Lattimore comes with recent injury concerns, something the Lions have shown a willingness to gamble on when adding players.

Defensive coordinator Aaron Glenn would also help foster a bounce back for Lattimore. Under Glenn's tutelage in New Orleans as defensive backs coach, Lattimore won Defensive Rookie of the Year in 2017 and earned Pro Bowl nods in 2017, 2019, 2020.

The Lions could then draft an impact cornerback like Kool-Aid McKinstry, with Lattimore as a veteran mentor. A move to add Lattimore wouldn't eliminate using a high draft on a cornerback.

There are plenty of other veteran corners who could be a fit for Detroit, but Lattimore feels like the best gamble in terms of upside, familiarity and cost.