Detroit Lions Rumors: Nick Fairley on the trade block?


Aug 2, 2013; Allen Park, MI, USA; Detroit Lions defensive tackle Nick Fairley (98) during training camp at Detroit Lions training facility. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

Is Detroit Lions fourth-year defensive tackle, Nick Fairley on the trade block entering the 2014 season?

It is a possibility.

The Detroit Free Press’, Dave Birkett tossed the idea around recently, citing a situation that all Lions fans have become familiar with as of late — Fairley’s demotion to second-team defense.

Fairley, the Lions’ first-round pick in 2011, was the best defensive lineman in college football when he led Auburn to a national championship. Fairley’s stock plummeted however, in the weeks leading up to the draft over concerns about his work ethic and motivation.

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  • The Lions hustled him in for a visit a week before the draft, on the final day they could entertain prospects. Then, when he slid to 13, they took him and paired him up with Pro-Bowler, Ndamukong Suh. Unlike Suh though, Fairley is no physical specimen. In fact, he is quite the opposite.

    Fairley had started every game he played since Nov. 4, 2012 — until Friday, when he came off the bench in a preseason game against the Oakland Raiders.

    Per reports, Fairley’s weight is the main reason for his demotion. The Detroit Free Press, citing an anonymous source, reported that Fairley weighs at least 320 pounds. To make matters worse, Fairley has responded to the benching rather poorly.

    Credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports

    It doesn’t take some sort of football guru or expert to realize that Lions head coach, Jim Caldwell is keeping a watchful eye on Fairley as this situation unfolds throughout training camp and preseason. If the reports of Fairley’s negative demeanor are true, it doesn’t say much for the quality of character that he posses.

    No one likes to be benched, however the way that the individual handles the situation has a major impact on their future.

    Keeping all of that in mind, one has to wonder just how much trade value Fairley has at this point if any?

    The Lions would probably be lucky to get a seventh rounder for the unmotivated and out-of-shape former No. 13 overall pick.

    A more likely scenario is that the Lions let Fairley play out the last year of his rookie contract in hopes that his talent and potential that once were, show through once more — even if that means playing from the bench.

    At this point would you call Nick Fairley a bust?