Lions Will Release Former Costly Free Agent Signing From Roster: Report

Justin Coleman

Getty Justin Coleman makes a play against the Chargers.

The Detroit Lions are continuing to get their roster in order for the 2021 season, and big moves continue to be on the horizon for the team ahead of the start of the new league year.

Thus far, Detroit has already restructured a contract and seen the official release of linebacker Christian Jones. Rumors say the team is also set to move on from cornerback Desmond Trufant, and now, cornerback Justin Coleman could be added to that mix as well.

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A report from NFL Network reporter Tom Pelissero revealed that the Lions are set to release Coleman in the days ahead.

If the Lions wanted to save a bit of dead money, Coleman could be designated as a post-June 1 cut. It’s possible that the team will simply want to let him get a jump on free agency, however, in addition to getting a fresh start for their own cornerback room. Releasing Coleman could save the Lions over $6 million dollars.

Coleman only lasted a pair of seasons in Detroit after coming to the team as a free agent in the 2018 offseason.

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Justin Coleman Stats

A few offseasons ago, the Lions managed to sign Coleman to a huge deal on the open market, and at the time, it was a move that folks said might help the team in a big way. Coleman re-set the market for slot cornerbacks and figured to be a major difference-maker in Detroit. The trouble? Coleman was never healthy and managed to get off to a slow start with the Lions. He struggled in Detroit’s scheme and was a far cry from earning the money that the team handed him.

In terms of Coleman, he set the market at cornerback a few years back, but hasn’t been consistent enough in his time with the Lions. After a pair of solid seasons in Seattle, Coleman only has put together 1 interception, 84 tackles, 3 forced fumbles and 14 passes defended. Injury shortened Coleman’s season in 2020, but he has been far from the impact player he was signed to be on the massive contract. That’s likely the reason he found himself on the outside looking in of the team’s roster bubble this offseason under a new staff and a new defensive mindset.

Lions Cornerback Room Could See Changes

The Lions could be looking at plenty of interesting changes at cornerback in the months ahead given the high-dollar amount that a couple of their players occupy. Desmond Trufant is not the only player who could be on the block, as cornerback Justin Coleman might also be destined to be on the move in the weeks ahead. The team has a couple of solid young players to work with in Jeff Okudah and Amani Oruwariye, so they could look to give each more time and a bigger role for 2021. Detroit could also pursue a new free agent or two, and make a splurge on the position at some point in the impending NFL Draft.

That will be likely to happen if both Trufant and Coleman are cut which reports indicate will be playing out this offseason. Now, Coleman could be the next shoe to drop for the team.

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