Detroit Lions: 3 free agents to sign considering limited offseason

(Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
(Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images) /
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Detroit Lions
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RG: Larry Warford

The New Orleans Saints released right guard Larry Warford after using a first-round draft pick on former Michigan Wolverine center Cesar Ruiz.  Ruiz is a flexible interior lineman that played exclusively as a center but has shown the ability to play either guard position if needed.

Warford is a bit old school.  He’s a mauler that stands 6-foot-3 and a massive 320-pounds.  The former Detroit Lions draft pick didn’t fit the Lions offensive scheme during his days with the Detroit.  After clashing with offensive coordinator Joe Lombardi, who largely failed during his time in Motown, Warford moved on.

The Lions used a third-round pick on Warford back in the 2013 NFL Draft, and he performed well in Detroit, but he’s not efficient playing in a spread offense.  Warford excelled blocking for the powerful Mark Ingram, in Sean Payton‘s offensive scheme.

According to Pro Football Focus (PFF), Warford produced a stellar overall grade of 73.1 for the 2019 season, his most productive season since his last in Detroit back in 2016 when he provided the Lions with a season mark of 81.3.

Warford is an above-average run-blocker and a stellar pass-blocker.  He’s exactly what the Detroit Lions need entering the 2020 season, and will likely be willing to sign a one-year deal.  The Saints released Warford to save themselves $7-million in order to retain the electric Taysom Hill.

The Detroit Lions allowed Graham Glasgow to walk in free agency, in turn, drafting a pair of rookie guards in Logan Stenberg and Jonah Jackson. Still, with a limited offseason program, it’s in the Lions’ best interest to sign a veteran guard and allow the pair of rookies to battle Joe Dahl for the left guard job for one season.  If both rookies prove to be NFL ready entering year two, the organization can simply allow Warford to walk. We know Larry is NFL ready and will fit offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell’s balanced offense.