Two positions of need for the Lions heading in to the NFL Draft were cornerback and linebacker, two positions that were not addressed, except for fifth round pick Doug Hogue. With plenty of options at both positions as soon as free agency there are a certain few who seem to stand out on the Lions list of targets.
Linebackers: Barrett Ruud, Paul Posluszny, Stephen Tulloch
All of these guys are tackling machines, getting at least 120 tackles a piece last season. Each would be an instant upgrade to our depleted linebacker corps, and would take over the starting middle linebacker position. Current middle linebacker DeAndre Levy could move to one of the outside linebacker positions and a combination of Bobby Carpenter, Zack Follett or another free agent signing could play on the other side. If I had my choice I’d take Posluszny, he was the heart-and-soul of a terrible Buffalo defense and still had 150 tackles last season. Behind our defensive line he should be able to increase on his three career sacks and continue to rack up tackles.
Cornerbacks: Antonio Cromartie, Nnamdi Asomugha, Johnathan Joseph
The Lions best cornerback last season, Chris Houston, is a free agent and should be a high priority this offseason for Detroit. But even if Houston is brought back into the fold, the Lions are desperate for a cornerback after having one of the worst pass defenses in the league last year. Asomugha is the true prize of free agency, but he said he wants to sign with a Super Bowl contender. The Lions should make their first playoff appearance since 1999, but I don’t think that will be enough to sway Asomugha. The Lions pursued Cromartie when he was a member of the Chargers via trade so it would make sense for them to try and sign him now that he is a free agent. Joseph was the shut down corner for the Bengals and didn’t see many passes come his way, and would have the same effect in the Lions defensive backfield. I would love to see Asomugha in Honolulu blue, but most likely it would be Cromartie coming to Detroit this offseason.
According to ESPN the NFL and the NFLPA are nearing an agreement that could be ratified as soon as July 21. The league already seems to have dates set up for important events such as the start of free agency and training camps. According to the report the only game in jeopardy of being moved or missed is the NFL Hall of Fame Game on August 7. One key talking point that could hold up the agreement is the new Rookie Wage scale, but all signs point to football being back to normal come July 21 with, importantly, no games missed. NBA fans could only hope for such a recovery from the labor dispute.
Curt, good writing, but you might want to try getting a little more editing done. But so far so good, except for the fact that you think the lions will make the playoffs ha ha ha. The back 7 is terrible, and when Levy is your best linebackers you are really hurting, he has consistently ranked in the top 5 for most missed tackles….
Check the writer, but thanks for the tip