Saturday, August 17, 2013

Detroit Lions get busy making defensive personnel changes

Thursday night the Detroit Lions first team dense got shredded by Brandon Weeden and the Cleveland Browns. there is no nice way to say it. those are the cold hard facts. So Lions' General Manager Martin Mayhew has spent the last two days looking for veterans who can help his struggling defense. It is hard to find any fault in bringing in veteran OLB Rocky McIntosh. A move the team looked at awhile back. They also brought in DT Justin Bannan.

It may seem a little odd to bring in another DT to a team that already has Ndamukong Suh and Nick Fairley (and a few capable backups) but the Lions are very young at DT and having a guy who has been around and can help guide that unit makes a ton of sense. It is not a grand slam move, but a solid base hit to add a veteran to the D line. It seems very likely Bannan will make the final roster as the rest of the Lions DT all have less that five years of experience at this level.

Adding McIntosh makes even more sense as the LB corps have looked particularly awful so far this pre-season. It seems a virtual lock that Stephen Tulloch will once again start in the middle and DeAndre Levy has one of the outside spots locked up. Adding McIntosh creates competition with late round draft picks Tahir Whitehead and Travis Lewis to make the 53 man roster as well as pushing Ashlee Palmer for the other starting OLB spot.

There is no way to know what kind of impact these moves will make right now. They seem to be solid moves as the Lions look to fix their issue this pre-season. It has also just been announced that the team has brought in 11 year veteran Rashean Mathis, a DB who played with the Jacksonville Jaguars. Given what happened in Cleveland on Thursday night this signing could very much affect who winds up making the 53 man roster at the DB positions. Look for Mathis to push Ron Bartell for a roster spot.

In the end the team is being proactive in finding a cure for their defensive blues. That is all a fan can ask for at this stage of the season and it should make their fans happy, and help erase the memory of a pitiful effort Thursday night in Cleveland.

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