It's already been a wild NFL offseason. Big trades have happened, such as Percy Harvin being dealt to the Seahawks. There have been a few big free agents signed already, most notably Mike Wallace heading to Miami. Guys like Nnamdi Asomugha, remember that big signing, have been released. The Detroit Lions have been part of the events so far. They've kept a couple of players, but they have lost one as well.
First, the Lions have re-signed Amari Spievey. It's only a one-year deal. Basically, it's a challenge contract in a sense almost. If Spievey can prove he is a starting caliber safety in the NFL, they'll give him a new deal next season. If not, he'll be gone. That works for me. Additionally, the Lions signed Willie Young to a second round tender. This means he will be back almost certainly. Detroit could need him, as Kyle Vanden Bosch is gone and it seems pretty much inevitable that Cliff Avril is headed elsewhere. Also, Jason Hanson may be back. So, there's that.
Now, for the one guy who is definitely gone. Gosder Cherilus has signed a deal with the Indianapolis Colts. The parameters of the deal aren't really relevant from Detroit's perspective. What matters is dealing with him being gone. However, this may not hurt much. Cherilus turned himself into a decent right tackle, sure, and he can be an upgrade for Indianapolis. The Lions can manage though. Riley Reiff will take over at one of the tackle positions. Jeff Backus will presumably be the other. That will leave them with one guard position to fill. I presume somebody like Bill Nagy or Jason Fox will fill that, if either of them is healthy. It could work. It also allows them to focus their draft picks on the defense, and perhaps on running backs and wide receivers. Hopefully only late picks on the latter two.
That's all that has really happened now. There are some news and notes and rumors about the Lions swirling however. Some of it is good. Some of it not so much. First, Louis Delmas is meeting with the Rams. That doesn't mean he will sign, but I hope the Lions can keep him. He has Pro Bowl talent if he can be healthy. To deal with this fact, the Lions are having Glover Quin visit. I could live with him as a potential Delmas replacement. That being said, I'd prefer they sign Quin and re-sign Delmas, and let Spievey serve as a backup/inevitable Delmas injury replacement, and he could play some cornerback as well. If they just sign Quin and let Delmas go, they will likely need to spend an early draft pick on a safety.
More good news: The Lions are working on a three-year deal with Chris Houston. Aside from Delmas, he's probably the free agent I'd most like to see back. He's a good cornerback, and the Lions needs cornerbacks. Honestly, if they can re-sign Houston and add one lower-tier cornerback free agent, they might not even really need to draft one early. I still think they should, of course.
There are two more players scheduled to meet with the Lions. I am happy with one of them and not so much with the other. One of them is Jason Jones, who could play defensive end of defensive tackle. He would provide nice depth to the defensive line, especially if Sammie Hill or Lawrence Jackson don't return. I would be glad if they signed him to a reasonable deal. On the other hand there is Reggie Bush. There are two names that I have heard in connection to the Lions more than any other this offseason. One has been Ziggy Ansah in the NFL Draft. The other has been Bush. Both have disappointed me.
Sure, Bush is a good running back. He is sort of what they wanted from Jahvid Best. He's also 28 and is a running back. The kind of contract he is going to get is going to be too much money for his talents and his potential future. Plus, it would be a waste of Detroit's limited assets. That's money they could spend on their defense. They could get two cheap running backs to do the same thing as Bush as part of a rotation for just as much impact. Joique Bell could honestly be as good as Bush this season. Would Bush help the Lions? Sure, but it would be a mistake to sign him.
Maybe the Lions will be fortunate and they won't end up signing Bush. Maybe the Rams won't sign Delmas and Detroit can get him back. We will have to wait to find out.