Detroit Lions: Chase Daniel not the best option but a suitable backup

(Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images)
(Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images) /

The Detroit Lions have finally signed a capable backup quarterback.  Chase Daniel wasn’t the best available option, but he’s better than what Detroit’s had for quite some time.

Signing Chase Daniel isn’t going to ‘wow’ anyone, but finally, the Detroit Lions have a capable backup quarterback.  Detroit continues to search for its next Shaun Hill.  The average fan may not detect daniel’s impact, but he’s a significant upgrade to the revolving backup quarterback door the Lions saw last season.

Last year Detroit went through a plethora of backup quarterbacks starting with Tom Savage and ending with David Blough.  The organization saw Josh Johnson, Kyle Sloter, and Jeff Driskel, just to name a few.

Daniel is a 33-year old that’s seen his fair share of NFL games up close and personal. Daniel has sat behind the likes of Drew Brees and Alex Smith throughout his career.  Brees, of course, the future Hall of Famer and say what you’d like about Smith, but he’s a pro’s pro. Two great players to sit behind, to learn from, and to break down film with.

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I can appreciate general manager Bob Quinn bringing in Daniel to work alongside Matthew Stafford.  In a perfect world, Daniel doesn’t see the football field, meshes with Stafford, and becomes another veteran set of eyes breaking down game tape.  It’s always a benefit to have a backup quarterback who can be a superstar in the quarterback’s room.

Last season Daniel came out of the bullpen three times for an injured Mitchell Trubisky making one start, and the Chicago Bears offense didn’t miss a beat.  In two of his three appearances in 2019, Daniel completed 22 of 30 passes.  He finished the year with a completion percentage of 70%, going 45 of 64 for 435 yards, 3 passing touchdowns, and 2 interceptions.

Daniel has made just five career starts, unusual for a player who will now have a career earning of $47 million as a backup quarterback.  Daniel has it all figured out, or perhaps the greatest agent of all time.

The Detroit Lions have signed Daniel to a 3 year,  $13.05 million deal. The deal does include a voidable clause according to ESPN insider Adam Schefter. It’s a deal that won’t change Detroit’s draft strategy.  If organizations feel adding Daniel will prevent them from drafting Tua Tagovailoa, they are sadly mistaken.  It’s unlikely Detroit is targeting Tua, but if they were, this doesn’t change a thing.

As you can tell, I don’t hate the signing, but I would have preferred if the Detroit Lions took a chance on Marcus Mariota instead.  Mariota has a much brighter upside and is just 26 years old.  The details of Mariota’s new deal with the Las Vegas Raiders have yet been released.

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Before losing his starting gig to Ryan Tannehill, Mariota passed for 1203 yards, 7 touchdowns, and 2 interceptions but only led the Titans to a 2-4 record to start the season.