Mike Hughes adds versatility and depth to the Detroit Lions secondary

(Photo by David Eulitt/Getty Images)
(Photo by David Eulitt/Getty Images) /

Doug Kyed of Pro Football Focus (PFF) reported Monday that the Detroit Lions signed cornerback Mike Hughes to a one-year deal worth $3.5 million.

Hughes had been selected in the first round of the 2018 NFL Draft by the Minnesota Vikings with the 30th pick.  Hughes struggled to live up to expectations with the Vikings as he battled a plethora of injuries finishing two of his three seasons on Injured Reserve, battling knee and neck issues.

Rather than electing to pick up Hughes’ fifth-year option, Minnesota decided to trade the former first-round corner to the Kansas City Chiefs, where he performed exceptionally well last season.

Last season, Hughes appeared in every game, with Kansas City making five starts and consistently contributing to special teams.  According to PFF, Hughes is coming off a career-best 79.6 overall rating, including a 78.8 rating in coverage plus 74.7 defending the run with a tackling mark above 80.

The Detroit Lions add Mike Hughes to help bolster the teams’ secondary.

The Detroit Lions haven’t done much in free agency to this point other than sign a bunch of their own pending free agents plus added receiver DJ Chark.  It’s clear general manager Brad Holmes is angling to make a splash in free agency in a year or two.

Hughes, a 25-year old, brings versatility to the Detroit lineup with his ability to play inside or out.  He will likely join Amani Oruwariye and Jeff Okudah in the starting lineup as Jerry Jacobs continues to rehab a torn ACL from this past December. Okudah was lost for the season after suffering a ruptured Achilles in Week One but is expected to be ready to rock heading into training camp.

The addition of Hughes also allows the Detroit Lions to head into the NFL Draft without needing to use a premium draft pick on a cornerback if they prefer a prospect at another position.

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I assumed the organization would be eyeing a corner with one of their first four draft picks this April. Still, now they can confidently address their needs at receiver, safety, linebacker, and perhaps even quarterback if they so choose.