The Detroit Lions have enough wiggle room with regards to cash in order to make a few bigger splashes in free agency, and ahead of the period opening in March, a major move is being projected.
With plenty of holes to fill on both sides of the ball, the Lions will have many different choices as it relates to filling out their needs. One of the worst spots consistently has been the defense, which is why many believe the Lions will pay good money for an elite fix on that side of the ball.
The latest Lions news straight to your inbox! Join the Heavy on Lions newsletter here!
Recently, Bleacher Report and writer Alex Ballentine looked at the players they project to be the top free agents at different positions in the league and their possible destinations. When it came to Detroit, the Lions were called the top fit for New Orleans safety Marcus Williams given what he has done already in his career and what he could offer a rebuilding team like the Lions thanks to his winning pedigree.
As Ballentine explained, Williams would give the Lions winning experience for Aaron Glenn, his former position coach, and would allow the Lions to have a roving safety that could cover ground. The Saints aren’t likely to provide much of a challenge in terms of extending Williams, either, given their cap situation at the moment.
Last offseason Williams was tagged, but it feels like the timing could be ripe for him to sign a longer-term deal elsewhere.
Add it up and this could be a win for Dan Campbell and Detroit if they could sign Williams to come on the roster as this piece predicts and beef up one of the neediest positions on their roster.
Williams’ Stats & Career Highlights
Since he broke into the league in 2017, Williams has been one of the most consistent safeties in the league statistically. In total, Williams has put up a very solid 261 tackles to go with 15 interceptions. He has also broken up 38 passes, and has 1 touchdown to his credit along with 3 forced fumbles. Here’s a look at some of his best work in the pros thus far:
Williams cut his teeth in the league with New Orleans under the leadership of Glenn on the defensive side after coming to the Saints following a productive career at Utah, and reuniting with Glenn could prove to be a big deal for Williams if the Lions were to call him in free agency.
Lions Secondary Likely to See Major Offseason Change
Detroit’s secondary struggled at times in 2021, but was one of the groups to improve as the season pressed on in a big way. After losing Jeff Okudah in the first game of the year and losing other key players such as Jerry Jacobs and Amani Oruwariye, the Lions still improved significantly most of the year. Oruwariye was a weapon intercepting the ball, and has become a player to watch for the team moving forward given how good he has been. Specifically, Jacobs came into his own and played a big role for the team:
At safety, the Lions have even more potential issues. Tracy Walker had a career year with 108 tackles, but both he and Dean Marlowe are free agents. Will Harris played up and down as well, meaning the Lions could elect to start over at the position with a player like Williams, who is truthfully one of the league’s elite.
If Williams is indeed the choice, it would be a big step for the Lions as it relates to covering up a lot of deficiencies the team has on the back end. Adding a stud player like him would help to change the trajectory for this group.