Todays Detroit Lions Rumors: Lions WANT A High End CB

Lions Nation Unite
The NFL Combine is a place where draft prospects display their talents, but it’s also a week of teams mingling and discussing potential moves in free agency. With the legal tampering period just a week away, general managers are trying to formulate plans, and ESPN’s Dan Graziano and Jeremy Fowler have the latest buzz from Indianapolis.

In the article, ESPN has three NFL free agency rumors surrounding the Detroit Lions. Let’s break each of them down.

Amon-Ra St. Brown contract estimates
We already know, via Dave Birkett, that the Lions and St. Brown’s agency were planning on talking at the Combine to discuss a potential extension. It’s a no-brainer to give St. Brown—who has been playing on an extremely affordable fourth-round rookie deal—a significant pay bump. Graziano says the buzz in Indianapolis is that the contract could land somewhere “in the range of $26-28 million per year.”

Given that Tyreek Hill is already making $30 million a year and Justin Jefferson is expected to make north of that, this seems like a reasonable figure for St. Brown, who finished 2023 third in receiving yards, tied for fourth in receiving touchdowns, and tied for second in receptions.

Jonah Jackson could get paid
All has been quiet on the plans for free agent guard Jonah Jackson. There were reports the Lions and Jackson were not close to coming to a deal last year, and with his contract set to expire on March 13, it looks like the Lions’ starting left guard could hit the open market.

Per Fowler, the expectation is the guard market could explode this offseason, and that could include Jackson cashing in on free agency.

“So many teams need them and have targeted the position, and Detroit’s Jonah Jackson, Miami’s Robert Hunt, New England’s Mike Onwenu, and the Los Angeles Rams’ Kevin Dotson are among the top options,” Fowler wrote. “Don’t be surprised if some or all from this group command $16 million or more.”

Currently, the Lions are taking a $19.1 million cap hit for Taylor Decker, a $12.8 million hit for Frank Ragnow, and a $7.7 million hit for Penei Sewell. And with a huge payday eventually coming for Sewell, it’s possible Jackson will be priced out of the market in Detroit. That said, the Lions have a healthy cap situation, so it’s possible they continue to invest in their offensive line.

The Lions will be aggressive in pursuing a CB… maybe L’Jarius Sneed
We know that the Kansas City Chiefs are thinking about a “tag and trade” scenario for Sneed, which would cost teams not only valuable draft capital but a huge portion of their salary cap for an extension. Given the Lions’ relatively cautious nature in free agency, it would seem that would price Sneed out. However, Fowler believes the Lions could be in play, given their high demand for a cornerback.

“We know the Chiefs are working on a potential tag-and-trade with L’Jarius Sneed, and multiple teams are believed to be in the mix there,” Fowler wrote. “The word out of Indy is that Detroit is pretty set on adding a high-end corner, so the Lions are one to watch. Miami is worth keeping an eye on, too.”

Fowler also mentions Marshon Lattimore and Carlton Davis III as two other cornerbacks who could be on the trade market.
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