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 Free Agency 2018. 
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Martha Firestone Ford
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Post Free Agency 2018.
Pat Kirwan speculates that Malcom Butler might soon be a Lion.


February 6th, 2018, 5:40 pm
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Post Re: Free Agency 2018.
It certainly makes sense. And Billy screwed him which drives his price down a bit. If he doesn’t cost much, I’m good with it.

We need starters at DE, DT, and LB...and that’s just on D.

Swanson is done and Glasgow isn’t anything to write home about. TE is a need, RB is a big hole, LG is a need with Glasgow moving to C.

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February 6th, 2018, 8:39 pm
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Post Re: Free Agency 2018.
So, with the Lions finally having some money ($47,052,257 according to http://www.spotrac.com/nfl/cap/) to spend on FA's, whats the opinions on where to spend it?
Do they pay Ziggy? I'm thinking they try to because it's slim picken's for DE's in free agency, and he's flexible enough to potentially flourish in Patricia's multi-scheme D. Getting additional help to rush the passer will have to come from the draft. I'd also be in favor of signing a starting corner to play opposite Slay. I don't believe Tabor is capable of that yet, maybe he'll improve with better coaching.


February 8th, 2018, 7:09 pm
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Post Re: Free Agency 2018.
liontrax wrote:
So, with the Lions finally having some money ($47,052,257 according to http://www.spotrac.com/nfl/cap/) to spend on FA's, whats the opinions on where to spend it?
Do they pay Ziggy? I'm thinking they try to because it's slim picken's for DE's in free agency, and he's flexible enough to potentially flourish in Patricia's multi-scheme D. Getting additional help to rush the passer will have to come from the draft. I'd also be in favor of signing a starting corner to play opposite Slay. I don't believe Tabor is capable of that yet, maybe he'll improve with better coaching.


My guess is yes. And that cap number will be going up. Cap numbers have been trending upwards in chunks every year and predictions aren't changing yet. I don't think Ziggy will be getting a max deal, due to injuries, but it'll be fair (to him). Like you said, there aren't a lot of DE's.

Butler is a smart move and Patricia also has experience with Revis who was released today from KC. If they can get him on a minimum deal, he's a decent vet presence to have. Use in certain packages and mentor to the younger guys. Patricia will draw free agents, so we'll have a lot of options.

With his ability to work with players like Van Noy, a lot of players that might not be on our radar could be filling holes and be big contributors. Him mentioning that 4-3 or 3-4 doesn't matter, but putting together a scheme that works for the players you have and putting them in position to do their best was probably the best answer I've seen in awhile from a coach. When Schwartz and Caldwell were hired, I remember Mayhew putting the stipulation of running a 4-3, so it was refreshing to hear that it won't be the focus. Patricia ran 4-3 one week, 3-4 the next depending on opponent, so it's exciting to even think of us running different schemes over the season.

Free Agency is going to be exciting this year and I can already predict we'll be scratching our heads over some of the names lol


February 8th, 2018, 9:33 pm
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Post Re: Free Agency 2018.
We don't know what is happening with our own free agents yet and we are a bit behind the curve because we had to wait to hire Patricia and set the staff.

I'm not all that keen on bringing back Ziggy. Someone is going to offer him mad money and I don't think he is worth it. I am not opposed to bringing back Lawson or Whitehead. Starting LG, is something to look at, but Dahl played well there as a rookie and wasn't horrible when he stepped in when Glasgow moved to center. depth at center would be my greater concern.


February 9th, 2018, 1:35 pm
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Post Re: Free Agency 2018.
Jafo wrote:
We don't know what is happening with our own free agents yet and we are a bit behind the curve because we had to wait to hire Patricia and set the staff.

I'm not all that keen on bringing back Ziggy. Someone is going to offer him mad money and I don't think he is worth it. I am not opposed to bringing back Lawson or Whitehead. Starting LG, is something to look at, but Dahl played well there as a rookie and wasn't horrible when he stepped in when Glasgow moved to center. depth at center would be my greater concern.



I hate to see them let Ziggy walk with nothing in return. I agree it's a gamble to pay the "mad money" with the injury history.
Disagree about Lawson. Think they could get an upgrade for basically the same money. Whitehead's a possibility if he fits the scheme. Think Dahl did well and may have found a home at LG.


February 9th, 2018, 6:41 pm
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Post Re: Free Agency 2018.
Offense seems a lot easier to project right now than defense bc they retained Cooter but defense is difficult to project bc its unclear what Patricia would run and how the young recent acquisitions fit. Presumably they would add some more versatile defenders in the front 6-7 as he runs some hybrid schemes.

Offense
QB - maybe take a 3rd qb in the draft if value is there late. less likely this year given limited draft picks and more needs with new coach.
RB - Riddick and Abdullah are trade bait. I d draft a guy in 2nd-3rd range and add a mid level FA also. Whoever is left bw Abdullah and Riddick is a 3rd down back.
TE - Ebron sort of emerged and Roberts projects as a solid player so they may just need a lower level blocking type TE as a FA. Fells was disappointing as a blocker.
WR- There could be an outside chance they use Tate as a trade chip. Jones is signed and Golladay seems destined for a bigger role. TJ Jones had some clutch grabs and they have receiving backs. So they probably stand still here with the exception of depth signings to compete for a 5th WR role but if they actually trade Tate I could see them make a low key signing or drafting someone 4th-5th rd.
OL - They re kind of forced to stand still at OT where both players Wagner and Decker werent available. Wagner had some bouts of ineffectiveness and Decker was mediocre returning from injury. Big offseason for them. Quinn would be wise to take the clue and do a better job acquiring depth for the position but draft resources may be limited. I see them letting Glasgow move to center and draft another guard to compete with Dahl who IMO hasnt appeared ready enough to pen into a starting role.

DL - I think they re insane if they let Ansah walk. Dont let your passrushers walk especially if you re situation is as dire as the Lions. The franchise number for Ansah is $17m and thats probably a better option than giving him a long term deal and more guaranteed given his tendency to be nicked up but he s there best Dlineman. Even if Ansah is retained they probably need two starting grade DTs and another starting grade DE. My draft would be focused on the DL and if I can get one or two upgrades in free agency over Washington/Spence types I d do that in a heartbeat also.

LB - There s promise but not much production here. Davis was not a good player as a rookie but he s still an athletic hard worker who they used a top pick on so they upgrade this spot by upgrading the DL in front of him. Maybin seems like a more natural LBer than Davis but is undersized. These two players will be an interesting project for Patricia bc neither seem to be 3-4 fits and Quinn just took them last year - they could limit Patricia s scheme options. Whitehead was head and shoulders the Lions best linebacker but I think he heads to a team that will run more straight up 4-3 than the Lions will be looking to do. Worrilow isnt worth bringing back. Longa is young but pretty much just a special teamer. Copeland if healthy could be a hybrid type player. Lions are thin here and will need to add to the spot, this may be where they look for familiar free agents with New England ties.

DB - Diggs seemed to have won a 2018 starting safety spot but now has a new coordinator. My guess is Patricia takes Quinns word for it and they just go with Diggs/Quinn at safety. Slay is an obvious starter at CB. I dont see them going big for Butler, he ll probably still get a big contract despite a down year. Lawson will be a decent value for somebody but I think the Lions move on from him and try to let Tabor take over as the No 2. Agnew would probably be pencilled in as the nickel and they add a 4th CB in free agency.

Draft:
Rd 1 - DE/DT
Rd 2 - DE/DT
Rd 3- RB
Rd 4 - OG
Rd 5 - LB or DB
(Round 6 traded for Greg Robinson, Round 7 traded for Jonathan Banks)

FA - resign Ansah, Ebron 5th year option, swing tackle, RB Jeremy Hill type, blocking specialist TE, starting caliber OLB x 2, depth CB with experience x 2


Looks like they will need a strong offseason both in the draft and free agency in addition to health on that OL to be competitive. To me it sure looks like long odds for Patricia s first year to involve more than 6-7 wins. If it does its probably more a result of allowing Cooter to open up the offense and hitting big also on a runner to cover up the lumps the transitioning defense is likely to take.


February 9th, 2018, 9:25 pm
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Post Re: Free Agency 2018.
The Legend wrote:
Offense seems a lot easier to project right now than defense bc they retained Cooter but defense is difficult to project bc its unclear what Patricia would run and how the young recent acquisitions fit. Presumably they would add some more versatile defenders in the front 6-7 as he runs some hybrid schemes.

Offense
QB - maybe take a 3rd qb in the draft if value is there late. less likely this year given limited draft picks and more needs with new coach.
RB - Riddick and Abdullah are trade bait. I d draft a guy in 2nd-3rd range and add a mid level FA also. Whoever is left bw Abdullah and Riddick is a 3rd down back.
TE - Ebron sort of emerged and Roberts projects as a solid player so they may just need a lower level blocking type TE as a FA. Fells was disappointing as a blocker.
WR- There could be an outside chance they use Tate as a trade chip. Jones is signed and Golladay seems destined for a bigger role. TJ Jones had some clutch grabs and they have receiving backs. So they probably stand still here with the exception of depth signings to compete for a 5th WR role but if they actually trade Tate I could see them make a low key signing or drafting someone 4th-5th rd.
OL - They re kind of forced to stand still at OT where both players Wagner and Decker werent available. Wagner had some bouts of ineffectiveness and Decker was mediocre returning from injury. Big offseason for them. Quinn would be wise to take the clue and do a better job acquiring depth for the position but draft resources may be limited. I see them letting Glasgow move to center and draft another guard to compete with Dahl who IMO hasnt appeared ready enough to pen into a starting role.

DL - I think they re insane if they let Ansah walk. Dont let your passrushers walk especially if you re situation is as dire as the Lions. The franchise number for Ansah is $17m and thats probably a better option than giving him a long term deal and more guaranteed given his tendency to be nicked up but he s there best Dlineman. Even if Ansah is retained they probably need two starting grade DTs and another starting grade DE. My draft would be focused on the DL and if I can get one or two upgrades in free agency over Washington/Spence types I d do that in a heartbeat also.

LB - There s promise but not much production here. Davis was not a good player as a rookie but he s still an athletic hard worker who they used a top pick on so they upgrade this spot by upgrading the DL in front of him. Maybin seems like a more natural LBer than Davis but is undersized. These two players will be an interesting project for Patricia bc neither seem to be 3-4 fits and Quinn just took them last year - they could limit Patricia s scheme options. Whitehead was head and shoulders the Lions best linebacker but I think he heads to a team that will run more straight up 4-3 than the Lions will be looking to do. Worrilow isnt worth bringing back. Longa is young but pretty much just a special teamer. Copeland if healthy could be a hybrid type player. Lions are thin here and will need to add to the spot, this may be where they look for familiar free agents with New England ties.

DB - Diggs seemed to have won a 2018 starting safety spot but now has a new coordinator. My guess is Patricia takes Quinns word for it and they just go with Diggs/Quinn at safety. Slay is an obvious starter at CB. I dont see them going big for Butler, he ll probably still get a big contract despite a down year. Lawson will be a decent value for somebody but I think the Lions move on from him and try to let Tabor take over as the No 2. Agnew would probably be pencilled in as the nickel and they add a 4th CB in free agency.

Draft:
Rd 1 - DE/DT
Rd 2 - DE/DT
Rd 3- RB
Rd 4 - OG
Rd 5 - LB or DB
(Round 6 traded for Greg Robinson, Round 7 traded for Jonathan Banks)

FA - resign Ansah, Ebron 5th year option, swing tackle, RB Jeremy Hill type, blocking specialist TE, starting caliber OLB x 2, depth CB with experience x 2


Looks like they will need a strong offseason both in the draft and free agency in addition to health on that OL to be competitive. To me it sure looks like long odds for Patricia s first year to involve more than 6-7 wins. If it does its probably more a result of allowing Cooter to open up the offense and hitting big also on a runner to cover up the lumps the transitioning defense is likely to take.


Only 5 draft picks, so have to figure very active in FA and possible trades for picks. Ebron came on as soon as the trade talk started, so shows he needed a push. Hopefully gets out of his head.

I start every offseason thinking 8-8 and adjust based on moves. 9 wins last two years, and that was with zero run game. They're making it a collaborative effort for every O position coach, so hopefully, something changes. Any type of consistent pass rush and pressure combined with a run game and I don't think it's a long shot at all for a winning record. Davis was better once they took away some of the responsibility. Austin put too much on him. I expect a breakout season from him.


February 10th, 2018, 1:21 am
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Post Re: Free Agency 2018.
Birkett is saying our best bet is to franchise Ziggy, and I think I agree. We have a ton of money to spend, and there aren't enough good players to spend it on. Give Ziggy a one year trial to see if he can stay healthy and work in Patricia's system.

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February 14th, 2018, 6:54 am
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Post Re: Free Agency 2018.
thelomasbrowns wrote:
Birkett is saying our best bet is to franchise Ziggy, and I think I agree. We have a ton of money to spend, and there aren't enough good players to spend it on. Give Ziggy a one year trial to see if he can stay healthy and work in Patricia's system.


I agree. We simply cannot risk losing him this year. I would like to see if Ziggy could be a 3/4 OLB as well as a 4/3 DE.

Number 1 priority has got to be getting a RB that can perform the basic definition of the position. Then getting a 4/3 DE and a 3/4 OLB.

I think it would be wise to sign FA Malcom Butler. With all the QB’s in our division, we better have a darn good defensive backfield.


February 14th, 2018, 11:44 pm
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Post Re: Free Agency 2018.
I understand the need to retain Ziggy because of the awful pass rush, but I think it's an 80-90 % chance to be just dead money for most of the season. Your looking at $17M to tag a often banged up DE that looks more like a 30+ yr old vet than a 28 yr old in his prime. I'm not going to berate the move when it happens, but dropping a 3rd of your available cap space on Ziggy just feels wrong to me.


February 15th, 2018, 12:33 pm
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Post Re: Free Agency 2018.
Ziggy tagged. Watched the Combine presser with Quinn and Patricia and liked what I heard. It sucks waiting around waiting on FA to start lol


February 28th, 2018, 12:11 pm
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Post Re: Free Agency 2018.
njroar wrote:
Ziggy tagged. Watched the Combine presser with Quinn and Patricia and liked what I heard. It sucks waiting around waiting on FA to start lol


Combine this weekend and the following 2 weeks until the start of FA should be filled with releases and rumors. Legal tampering starts on the 12th, so we should know if the Lions are going to get a big name then.


February 28th, 2018, 1:59 pm
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Post Re: Free Agency 2018.
Awfully quite round here, what gives? Been a flurry of trades, none involving us of course. On the eve of FA, does anybody think we'll make a splash, or just a whisper?


March 10th, 2018, 12:50 pm
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Post Re: Free Agency 2018.
Hasn't been anything involving the Lions until yesterday/today. Sherman should be taking a visit next week if he doesn't sign a deal with the 49ers. I think he would be a big time replacement for Lawson even coming off an Achilles, but don't think there is anyway he signs cheap enough to feel good about the deal.


March 10th, 2018, 6:01 pm
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