Detroit Lions: Three free agents left for Bob Quinn to sign

(Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images)
(Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images) /
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Detroit Lions
(Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images) /

Edge Clay Matthews

The Detroit Lions would surely welcome the former long-time Green Bay Packers outside linebacker back into the NFC North division to perhaps seek revenge on his old organization.  That would make for a good story; the former ‘discount double-check’ stars face off twice a year.

Clay Matthews being released is yet another victim of the Los Angeles Rams being up against the cap.  Matthews, at 34 years old, is well into the back nine of his professional football career but still can be useful in a specific role–getting after the quarterback.

At this point, I see Matthews as primarily a third-down pass-rusher coming off of the edge.  It’s something the Detroit Lions have struggled with lately, rushing the passer.  Detroit oddly released their best edge rusher, Devon Kennard, after back to back 7 sack seasons.  It paints a perfect picture as to where we expect to see Jamie Collins next season; he will take over for Kennard.

The Lions may be able to sign Matthews for a fraction of the price on a one-year deal to play opposite Collins.  Matthews is known for getting plenty of terrible calls against him in recent years, often being called for roughing the passer, he’d fit right in here in Detroit.

Pro Football Focus gave him an overall grade of 54.2 last season, which included a pass-rush grade of 63.4.  Last season Matthews produced 8 sacks and 34 tackles.  Matthews is 3 sacks shy of 100 in his career; a perfect rotational piece Detroit should be interested in.