Players have different reasons for making different moves in free agency. For some, it has to do with team fit. For others, family plays a major role in a new locale.
In the case of Detroit Lions tight end Josh Hill, it could have been due to the weather. Michigan weather. Seriously.
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Hill signed over the weekend with the Lions ahead of free agency, and as he said, his family of four was very excited to see where he would be going next. His son had a demand in particular for dad. Make sure you can find a team where it snows away from a place where it it hot like New Orleans. Perhaps not coincidentally, the Lions ended up signing Hill to a contract.
Hill hails from Idaho originally, so it makes sense why his family could want to get back to their roots as it relates to that. The weather in Detroit can be very unpredictable, so it will be interesting to see how much snow the family gets to see in the end. Hopefully, everyone is alright playing in a dome as well, since Ford Field is not outdoors.
There’s probably plenty of other reasons Hill signed with the Lions including Dan Campbell, but it’s obvious in this case that the weather did not hurt matters.
Josh Hill Stats
At 30 years old, Hill is an interesting addition for the Lions given what he has done in the league so far. Hill is likely more of a blocking tight end, but he can make some catches too, given the fact that he has 1,071 yards and 15 touchdowns in his career. Hill came out of Idaho State in 2013 and has played his entire career in New Orleans until his recent release from the team.
Interestingly enough, Hill has a history making touchdown to his credit, having been on the receiving end of Drew Brees’ 540th touchdown pass, which broke Peyton Manning’s NFL record. In Detroit, Hill will come in and add to the depth of a group that has seen departures and inconsistency in recent years and is looking for much better results in the future in terms of catching the ball and getting after it up front.
Weather Not Usually a Selling Point for Lions
Of all the reasons free agents usually choose Detroit, weather would not be high on the list normally. Typically, most players live outside of Detroit and only commute back for the regular season. That might not be the case this time around, however, with Hill. As he admitted, it was tough to leave New Orleans, but the Michigan experience could be closer to what the family is used to.
In the past, players have signed with Detroit thanks to money or the chance to join solid rosters. In the end, this might be one of the first time in history that a free agent mentioned the weather as a selling point. Hill and his son will have plenty of time to bond in the snow from November until March, typically the snowiest time of the year in Michigan.