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Lions’ Hand Could be Forced on Free Agent Cornerback

The Lions obviously like to play it conservatively in free agency, even when they aren’t in cap trouble, and this year is no exception.  The sense of urgency may pick up given the early activity on the cornerback market, which has been decimated so far.

Courtland Finneagn, Brandon Carr and Carlos Rogers have all signed in the last 24 hours and Brent Grimes, Lardarius Webb, Stanford Routt, Terrell Thomas and Tim Jennings either signed prior to free agency, got tagged or got tendered as well.

That leaves very few starting caliber corners available which is concerning considering the Lions just lost one of theirs.  Cornerback is not a position that is easy to fill with a rookie especially if they are not a top 15-20 prospect.  The Lions need to add a starting caliber corner in free agency and the dearth of players will drive up the cost.

The Lions have been active in the trade market in the past few years, but there don’t seem to be a heck of a lot of possibilities there either.  The Lions will address the cornerback position in the draft, but I’d be shocked if they just hand a rookie a starting position.

The Lions won’t break the bank or do a long term deal, had they wanted to go that route they would have jumped in the Finnegan or Carr derby.  They will look for another Eric Wright, a talented young player with potential that can come in and compete.  Some of the players that fit that mold are William Middleton, Tracy Porter, Richard Marshall, Aaron Ross and William Gay.

The Lions could look at a veteran stop gap player that could help groom a rookie or two, but most of the older corners on the market are there because they dropped off significantly.  The Lions aren’t really in a huge bind, but in the cornerback market they can’t afford to let the market come to them anymore, they may need to step up the aggressiveness.

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2 Responses to “Lions’ Hand Could be Forced on Free Agent Cornerback”

  1. dan says:

    I really feel the Lions should have been more active when the prime free agents were available. I realize there were salary cap issues, but if the contract restructuringhad been completed sooner and things had come together in a more timely fashion, a guy like Finnegan or Grimes could have helped this team a lot in an area that needed upgrades byast seasons stats.

  2. Dan-

    Grimes was franchised and Finnegan was going to cost too much. The teams that spend on the early days of free agency tend to overspend out of desperation. It’s always the same teams doing it too, which creates a vicious circle.

    Overspend on a player that doesn’t pan out, take a big cap hit, sit out free agency until you have money again and then overspend. These teams never win consistently.

    Spending big money on a corner is a waste for the Lions because they don’t need an elite CB. They need a couple solid starters and some good depth, the pass rush is what the team is built around and that minimizes the need for elite corners.

    The Giants’ CBs are not great, but the front 4 gets so much pressure they don’t need to be great. Same plan for the Lions. Injuries and Suh’s suspension are what doomed the secondary last year.

    The Lions were doing great until Delmas, Houston, Spievey and Wright got dinged up. Then Suh got suspended, Fairley and Corey Williams got hurt and the pass rush died down.

    The Lions need better depth so when somebody is hurt they can sit out until healthy rather than play through because the talent dropoff is too big.

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