Whether it’s through the draft or free agency, the Detroit Lions will need to add more weapons at the wide receiver position. The safest bet for them is to sign a veteran who has already established himself as a consistent playmaker in the NFL.
New York Giants wide receiver Hakeem Nicks is looking to prove that he can bounce back from his rough outing in 2013. A free agent with an immense amount of motivation could convince Detroit that signing Nicks can quickly fix the gapping hole at the No. 2 spot on the depth chart.
Once depicted as a player with the most potential to become the NFL’s best wide receiver by K.C. Joyner back in 2011, Nicks finished with more than 1,000 yards receiving in 2010 and 2011. However, despite not recording any touchdowns last season, Nicks did compile 896 yards receiving on 56 receptions. While having no touchdowns to his name in 2013 was disappointing, no other player had more yards without recording a single touchdown than Nicks, which shows that he was still a key member of the Giant’s offense.
What makes Nicks unique from the majority of the wide receivers in this offseason’s 2014 free agent class is that he’ll be regarded as a No. 1 receiver on most teams’ depth chart. Considering Nicks’ tremendous talent seen on the field the past six years, lining up opposite of Calvin Johnson will cause matchup problems for opposing defenses.
Nicks would also be a major upgrade from Nate Burleson, who was cut by Detroit this past month. It will also cause Kris Durham to bump down on the depth chart to compete with Jeremy Ross and Ryan Broyles for the No. 3 spot, giving the Lions options at the slot come game time.
The issue with Nicks is the price tag that hangs over his head. Due to the fact that the Philadelphia Eagles re-signed Riley Cooper to a five-year, $25 million contract, Nicks will most likely seek a deal for that amount from interested franchises.
Without a doubt, Nicks will upgrade Detroit’s offense the minute he’s signed. However, because there are so many other teams that are willing to pay more money for Nicks, it makes it uncertain if the Lions want to pursue him this offseason.