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News » Detroit Lions Strategy and Personnel 2009-03-09


Detroit Lions Strategy and Personnel 2009-03-09


Detroit Lions Strategy and Personnel 2009-03-09
The Lions have addressed some needs in free agency.


In Bryant Johnson, they have found a No. 2 receiver opposite Calvin Johnson. In Maurice Morris, they have found a complement to running back Kevin Smith.

In defensive tackle Grady Jackson, they have someone who can plug the middle on running downs. They ranked last against the run last year. In Phillip Buchanon, Anthony Henry and Eric King, they have started retooling the cornerback position. They had only one interception by a defensive back last season, and they cut that DB - cornerback Leigh Bodden.

But the Lions still have plenty of holes.

TEAM NEEDS/OFF-SEASON STRATEGY

The Lions still need help at quarterback - both a veteran backup and a quarterback for the future. They still badly need help at linebacker. They still have a gaping hole at left guard.

Then there are positions like tight end, less pressing concerns but concerns nonetheless.

TEAM NEEDS

1. Quarterback: The Lions are hopeful Daunte Culpepper will be better, with an off-season to get in shape to play for his old coordinator, Scott Linehan. Still, they went after Jay Cutler for a reason. They could take Matthew Stafford No. 1 overall.

2. Linebacker: Ernie Sims can be a playmaker on the weak side, but he's all they've got. The Lions could take Aaron Curry No. 1. There are enough first-round linebackers that a good one should be there at No. 20 as well.

3. Guard: The Lions failed to land Derrick Dockery in a trade, then in free agency. They have hosted Daniel Loper but haven't signed him. If they don't find a left guard in free agency, they could move left tackle Jeff Backus and take a left tackle like Jason Smith or Eugene Monroe No. 1.

MEDICAL WATCH: No updates.

FRANCHISE PLAYER: None.

TRANSITION PLAYER: None.

UNRESTRICTED FREE AGENTS

--RB Aveion Cason helped boost the Lions' return game, but not enough, and wasn't a factor in running game.

--DT Shaun Cody didn't live up to expectations as a second-round pick and hasn't heard from the Lions.

--WR Keary Colbert joined the Lions late and didn't make an impact.

--T George Foster struggled after being traded from Denver and lost right tackle job to 2008 first-rounder Gosder Cherilus. Unlikely to return.

--RB Rudi Johnson did not regain his Pro Bowl form in Detroit. Unlikely to return.

--LB Paris Lenon was a smart, hard-working veteran but didn't make enough plays in the middle. Unlikely to return.

--C Andy McCollum filled in at center while Dominic Raiola was injured in 2008 and Lions ran the ball well. Still unlikely to return.

--WR Shaun McDonald didn't produce the same way after Mike Martz left.

--DT Langston Moore was a solid role player, but the Lions cut him once and have young defensive tackles.

--LB Ryan Nece was signed because of his experience in the Tampa Two, and the Lions are ditching the Tampa Two. Unlikely to return.

--CB Stanley Wilson never developed and spent 2008 on injured reserve. Unlikely to return.

UNRESTRICTED FREE AGENTS (not tendered)

--DT Shemiah LeGrande (not tendered as ERFA).

RESTRICTED FREE AGENTS: None.

EXCLUSIVE RIGHTS FREE AGENTS: None.

PLAYERS RE-SIGNED

--T/G Damion Cook: UFA; 1 yr, terms unknown.

--PK Jason Hanson: Potential UFA; 4 yrs, terms unknown.

--OG Stephen Peterman: Potential UFA; $15M/5 yrs, $5.5M guaranteed.

PLAYERS ACQUIRED

--DE Sean Conover (waivers Jets).

--CB Phillip Buchanon: UFA Buccaneers; $8.5M/2 yrs, guarantees unknown.

--CB Anthony Henry (trade Cowboys).

--DT Grady Jackson: UFA Falcons; $8M/3 yrs, guarantees unknown.

--WR Bryant Johnson: UFA 49ers; $9M/3 yrs, SB unknown.

--CB Eric King: UFA Titans; $4.25M/2 yrs, SB unknown.

--OT Daniel Loper: UFA Titans; 1 yr, terms unknown.

--RB Maurice Morris: UFA Seahawks; $7M/3 yrs, SB unknown.

PLAYERS LOST

--CB Leigh Bodden (released).

--WR Mike Furrey (released).

--TE Dan Campbell (released).

--OL Jon Dunn (released/failed physical).

--QB Jon Kitna (traded Cowboys).

--OG Edwin Mulitalo (released).

--FB Moran Norris: UFA 49ers; $5M/3 yrs, $1.5M SB.

--QB Dan Orlovsky: UFA Texans; $9.15M/3 yrs, $2.4M SB.

--TE John Owens: UFA Seahawks; terms unknown.

--DE Corey Smith: UFA (presumed deceased in boating accident).

--S Dwight Smith (released/failed physical).



Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:http://www.foxsports.com
Added: March 9, 2009

Corey Smith Name: Corey Smith
#93
Position: DE
Age: 28
Experience: 6 years
College: North Carolina State
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