‘On the Right Track’ Lions Receive High Grade for Free Agency Work

Jamaal Williams

Getty Jamaal Williams celebrates a Packers score.

The Detroit Lions have attacked the 2021 offseason in a big way right off the bat, and have been one of the most active teams in the league start to finish so far in building their roster.

Detroit has made plenty of moves thus far during the offseason and free agency, and as the process drags on through the close of March and into April, it’s time to start thinking about grades for teams.

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In terms of the Lions, the team has already impressed some folks for their ability to get the right players in the mix for the future. Recently, Bleacher Report and writer Alex Kay took a look at grading every team for their work, and had the Lions coming up with a solid B grade for their work this year.

As for why, Kay wrote:

“The Detroit Lions made it clear early in the offseason that they weren’t going to continue floundering. The team opted to part ways with longtime quarterback Matthew Stafford in a trade with the Los Angeles Rams, acquiring future assets and getting a chance to see what Jared Goff can bring to the table in his second stop.

In free agency, the Lions kept Romeo Okwara in a move that helped give them one of the more exciting defensive fronts. The rest of the roster is a work in progress, which is to be expected during a massive rebuild.

The team is shedding salary and dumping veterans while loading up on cheap vets to complement the picks and cash they plan to build around. The draft will be a pivotal one, but the Lions are on the right track just a week into the new league year.”

Detroit has changed around a roster that seemed to max itself out, and those moves have some folks excited for the future. The present might seem bleak, but it’s possible that the team could also surprise when they get going on the season.

It’s possible that the team might be much better than many are giving them credit for this offseason in terms of building for a better future.

Lions Ripped as Last-Place Power Ranking Team

Not everyone is a fan of what the team has done. Recently, NFL.com contributor Dan Hanzus put together his power rankings coming out of free agency, and the Lions were occupying the last spot in the NFL at 31st. Worse yet, Hanzus doesn’t seem to think the team can do anything to pull out of this ranking given the weapons they lack.

He wrote:

“If the Lions are serious in their belief that Jared Goff can be a legitimate starter going forward, they’ll need to get him some help. Marvin Jones and Kenny Golladay both exited the picture in free agency, leaving Goff with a wide receiver room currently anchored by Breshad Perriman and Tyrell Williams. Detroit could investigate veterans still on the market — Sammy Watkins, T.Y. Hilton and Antonio Brown are among the options — but those players don’t make a ton of sense for a team that might be headed for a deep rebuild. Good luck, Jared.”

The Lions have given Goff some help in free agency, but perhaps not enough for everyone’s liking. Analysts currently think they rate the worst of any NFL team, and are primed for a miserable season as a result of that.

Power rankings can always change after the draft, but the Lions have a lot of ground to gain if they wish to change that narrative in the coming months according to some.

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Recap of Lions’ Offseason Moves

Detroit started things out with the major trade for Jared Goff and draft picks, and seemingly didn’t slow down once the offseason started for real. The Lions managed to sign multiple low-buy free agents at positions of need such as Jamaal Williams, Breshad Perriman, Tyrell Williams, Damion Ratley, Josh Hill, Alex Anzalone, Charles Harris and Randy Bullock. Detroit also struck a trade for defensive lineman Michael Brockers. The rest of the way, the Lions could look for help in the secondary, as they have yet to add any of that despite sniffing around for it on the open market.

Regardless, folks are already pleased with the moves the team has made this offseason. It’s possible these high grades could only improve with more savvy moves in the weeks ahead.

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