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NFC North Free Agency: Detroit Lions additions and subtractions in 2020

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Let’s take a look at the moves across the NFC North division this offseason, moving on to the Lions in Motor City.

NFL: Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Detroit Lions Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports

As a lead up to the draft, Acme Packing Company will be tracking the offseason personnel changes for the rest of the NFC North. Today we continue with the Detroit Lions.

The Detroit Lions did not have the season in 2019 that they were hoping for.

They went into their week 5 bye at 2-1-1 and ended up going 1-11 over the remaining weeks that were riddled with injuries, especially at the quarterback position. So far this offseason, they have made a few additions to try to upgrade from their 4th place NFC North finish.

Subtractions

CB Darius Slay

The Lions traded Slay to the Philadelphia Eagles for third- and fifth-round draft picks in 2020. This move may have seemed surprising given that Slay is one of the top cornerbacks in the league, but there had been tension brewing between him and coaches. He signed a three-year, $50 million dollar deal.

RT Rick Wagner

A few years ago, Wagner signed one of the biggest contracts ever for a right tackle, but many in Detroit felt he did not live up to it, so it was time to move on as the Lions released him in early March. Wagner ended up signing a two-year, $11 million deal with the Green Bay Packers to fill a hole left by Bryan Bulaga.

OLB Devon Kennard

Kennard was released after the Lions signed Jamie Collins from the New England Patriots. He had a solid 2 seasons with the Lions, and ended up signing with the Arizona Cardinals for three-years and $20 million.

DT Damon Harrison

Harrison came over to the Lions in a trade from the Giants and signed an extension. However, the union did not last long, and Harrison was released a year later. Last season he struggled through injuries and contemplated retiring after the season. He is currently a free agent.

DT Mike Daniels

Mike Daniels signed a one-year contract with the Lions after his tenure with the Packers, but was not re-signed after the season and is currently a free agent.

Additional players lost in Free Agency

  • CB Rashaan Melvin (Jaguars)
  • P Sam Martin (Broncos)
  • DT A’Shawn Robinson (Rams)
  • TE Logan Thomas (Redskins)
  • C Graham Glasgow (Broncos)
  • WR J.D. McKissic (Redskins)
  • QB Jeff Driskel (Broncos)
  • RG Jeff Driskel (Free Agent)
  • WR Jermaine Kearse (Free Agent)
  • S Tavon Wilson (Free Agent)
  • DT Jamie Meder (Free Agent)
  • DT Darius Kilgo (Free Agent)
  • QB Kyle Sloter (Free Agent)

Additions

CB Desmond Trufant

Trufant was released by the Atlanta Falcons and quickly scooped up by the Lions. With the departure of Darius Slay, Trufant seems to be his replacement. Last season he only saw the field for nine games due to injury. He had solid production in those games, including 4 interceptions. He signed a two-year, $21 million contract.

RT Halapoulivaati Vaitai

The most expensive free agent for the Lions this year is Vaitai, who was brought in to replace Rick Wagner, who was released and ended up with the Green Bay Packers. He was brought in to be the starter, even though he has only started 20 games over the last 4 years. His contact runs for five years and pays out $50 million dollars.

DT Danny Shelton

Shelton was brought in to fill the spot left behind by Damon Harrison on the defensive line. He comes in at a relatively low cost compared to the players on the defensive line last year, which gave the Lions flexibility to sign other free agents. The former Patriot signed a two-year, $8 million dollar deal.

WR Geronimo Allison

This former Packer wideout has found a new home in Detroit. Detroit already has solid starting wide receiver options, so Allison was brought in to fill in the depth in the WR3 or WR4 position. His contract is for one year and $1.187 million.

Addition Free Agency signings include

  • S Jayron Kearse (Vikings) - One-year, $2 million
  • S Duron Harmon (Patriots) - One Year, $4.25 million
  • CB Darryl Roberts (Jets) - One Year, $2 million
  • QB Chase Daniel (Bears) - Three years, $13,050,000 million
  • ILB Reggie Ragland (Chiefs) - One year, $1,047,500 million
  • CB Tony McRae (Bengals) - One year, $1,010,000 million
  • OLB Elijah Lee (49ers) - One year, $835,000

Re-signings

Below are the players the Lions resigned to play in Detroit.

  • WR Danny Amendola
  • RG Oday Aboushi
  • LS Don Muhlbach
  • S Miles Killebrew
  • CB Mike Ford
  • CB Dee Virgin