Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Offensive left tackle must be a priority for the Lions in this draft

There has been this angst among Lions fans whether they will be able to re-sign potential free agent defensive end Cliff Avril.
But the Lions would really be in trouble if left tackle Jeff Backus, another unrestricted free agent, departed.
Backus has played very well the last couple years. The Lions don't have an heir apparent at left tackle to replace him. He is also a player many fans have railed against for more than a decade. Unfairly, I might add.
Backus is far more irreplaceable than Avril.
It's been this given the Lions will re-sign Backus. All indications point that way.
But if there weren't those indications, and the Lions were pressed to re-sign Backus, they'd up a creek without a paddle. That's why it is imperative they address the offensive tackle in this draft.
Not right tackle. Left tackle. They can't be a point, when their quarterback Matthew Stafford is essentially their franchise player, that they don't have a decent left tackle to replace Backus, who is not getting any younger.
The fact Ohio State offensive tackle Mike Adams did not perform well at the combine is not necessarily a bad thing if the Lions are eyeballing a tackle in the second round or beyond. He only did 19 reps on the bench press at 225, but he is also 6-7 and has long arms. He ran OK for his size and is reasonably athletic otherwise. He also played well at left tackle in the Senior Bowl. And that's what matters. How well does the guy play.
If the Lions re-sign Backus as anticipated, they don't need a player who is necessarily going to step in this season. Backus has never missed a game in his career. Adams might fit that need. He does a big upside that could pay off down the road if given time to develop in the right system.


Blogger Barry said...

Pat, you said it best and while they are at it, grab a center. Lions habe many hole even after 10-6 season. They need a LB, lots of secondary and maybe RB.

6:26 PM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Pat, Good article and Sunday 3/4 supplemented your thoughts. My question is what is the opinion of Fox and Hibbard (sp?)who have been on the practice squad for a couple of years. Any possibilities there?

7:52 AM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Pat, Good article and amplified on Sunday 3/4. What is the status of Fox and Hibbard who have been on the practice squad for a couple of years?

7:56 AM 

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