By Kyle Johansen @kylejohansen on March 24, 2014
The Detroit Lions made their big free agency splash by signing wide receiver Golden Tate to complement Calvin Johnson, but they've been relatively quiet otherwise. While the Lions have re-signed center Dominic Raiola and tight end Brandon Pettigrew, they have seen defensive end Willie Young and safety Louis Delmas walk out the door. The Lions' secondary is always in need of improvement while defensive end and backup QB must also be addressed.
At 35 years old, Champ Bailey is no longer the force he once was, but he’s still better than any cornerback the Lions have lined up in the past decade. The secondary is perennially an area of weakness for Detroit and signing Bailey would be a major upgrade.
On Mar. 21 it was reported that safety Chris Clemons was visiting the Lions as the team looks to fill one of its largest holes. Clemons is the best available safety and the pickings get slim once he’s gone, as Major Wright would have to be under consideration in the event that the Lions can’t convince Clemons to sign.
After losing Willie Young to the Chicago Bears, the Lions will be looking for another starting defensive end. Jared Allen no longer strikes fear into the hearts of quarterbacks, but at 32 years old he has some positive production left in the tank. Allen is still an effective pass rusher and produced 11.5 sacks last year with two forced fumbles.
Despite re-signing Brandon Pettigrew, the Lions can use Finley as purely a receiving option who can provide Matthew Stafford with another large target to throw to in addition to Calvin Johnson. While Jermichael Finley never reached his potential in Green Bay, he has the type of potential worth taking a risk on. Finley is also injury-prone, so his lack of chemistry in Green Bay may have been related to his ability to stay on the field.
Mark Sanchez is not going to be confused for a starting caliber quarterback, and during his time in New York it seemed that everyone in the world realized that except for the Jets. However, while Sanchez does nothing to excite, he would be a capable backup to Matthew Stafford and should be smart enough to just throw the ball up to Calvin Johnson or dump it off to Reggie Bush.
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