Lions ‘Natural Fit’ for $97 Million CB After Cameron Sutton Release

Cameron Sutton Marshon Lattimore

Getty The Detroit Free Press' Dave Birkett argued that the Detroit Lions would be a "natural fit" for New Orleans Saints cornerback Marshon Lattimore after releasing Cameron Sutton.

The Detroit Lions have added two free agent cornerbacks and re-signed two others this offseason. But after releasing Cameron Sutton, the Lions could be back in the market for another potential starting cornerback. One of the more intriguing options is New Orleans Saints cornerback Marshon Lattimore.

The Detroit Free Press’ Dave Birkett argued that Lattimore is one of four veteran cornerbacks the Lions could target.

“The Saints may not be able to trade Lattimore until later this spring for cap purposes, but if they’re looking for takers there’d be a natural fit in Detroit,” Birkett wrote. “Lattimore played his first four NFL seasons under Lions defensive coordinator Aaron Glenn. He’s missed 17 games the past two seasons because of injuries.”

Lattimore signed a 5-year, $97.6 million extension in September 2021. He has three years remaining on that contract.

That contract will likely play a significant role in whether the Saints are able to trade the cornerback and what kind of compensation they will receive.

His recent injury past will also play a role. Lattimore sat out 10 games because of a lacerated kidney in 2022. He missed the final seven contests of 2023 with an ankle injury.

In 10 games last season, Lattimore posted 48 combined tackles, including 2 tackles for loss with 8 pass defenses and 1 interception.

What It Could Cost to Trade for CB Marshon Lattimore

Lattimore began his career as the No. 11 overall pick in the 2017 NFL draft. He made an impact immediately for the Saints, intercepting 5 passes in his first season on his way to Defensive Rookie of the Year honors.

In 2017, Lattimore also made the Pro Bowl. He was a Pro Bowler from 2019-21 as well until his injury problems the past two seasons.

Assuming Lattimore stays healthy for 2024, he’s a “natural fit” with the Lions because of his ability as an elite cover cornerback. Pass defense was Detroit’s biggest weakness during the 2023 season. The Lions finished the regular season ranked 27th in passing yards allowed. They also ended tied for 29th in net yards yielded per pass attempt.

In Detroit, Lattimore could start opposite Carlton Davis, who the Lions acquired in a trade with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. During the last season Lattimore played at least 16 games (2021), the Pro Football Focus player grades rated Lattimore and Davis both top 15 cornerbacks.

Pairing Lattimore with Davis could greatly improve the Lions pass defense in 2024.

The question, though, is how much will that cost. The Saints could receive as much as a $45 million dead cap hit if they trade Lattimore before June 1.

So, to make taking that dead cap hit worthwhile, Who Dat Dish’s Drew Collings proposed the Saints receiving a first-round pick as part of the trade package for Lattimore.

That will likely be too steep a price for the Lions after they traded a third-rounder for Davis. But perhaps the Lions could land Lattimore for cheaper trade compensation after June 1.

Lions Released CB Cameron Sutton

The Lions are potentially in the market for another starting cornerback because they released Sutton on March 21.

The Lions parted with Sutton after he became the subject of a police search, according to a March 20 release from the Hillsborough County (Florida) Sheriff’s Office.

The sheriff’s office posted on X (formerly Twitter) that it had issued a warrant for Sutton’s arrest on suspicion of “aggravated battery — domestic violence.” The officials clarified that Sutton was wanted on suspicion of domestic battery by strangulation, a felony.

The Detroit News’ Justin Rogers reported the police have “made multiple attempts to contact” Sutton. But they have been unable to reach him.

Sutton started 17 regular games for the Lions last season. He posted 65 combined tackles, including 4 tackles for loss, 6 pass defenses and 1 interception. The Lions signed Sutton to a 3-year, $33 million contract last offseason.

In addition to Lattimore, Birkett proposed the Lions potentially pursue Xavien Howard, Stephon Gilmore and Adoree’ Jackson to replace Sutton. Birkett also named L’Jarius Sneed a possible target, but the Kansas City Chiefs traded Sneed to the Tennessee Titans on March 22.

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