The Detroit Lions made three major contract extensions during the 2016 offseason. First, the Lions inked cornerback Darius Slay to an additional four years for $50.2 million. Then about a month later, the Lions locked up both punter Sam Martin and running back Theo Riddick on the same day to four and three year deals respectively.
Through the first five games of 2016, all three players have been huge contributors to the team. Slay may have just single-handedly won the game against the Eagles. Martin ranks fourth in average punt yards and first in net punting average. Riddick is fifth among running backs in receiving yards and leads the team in rushing yards through five games.
So today’s Question of the Day is:
Which contract extension was the smartest for the Detroit Lions?
My answer: Slay. All three of these contract extensions have proved to be great moves, and give some credit to all of the players for not resting on their laurels after getting paid. However, considering the Lions’ desperate need for playmakers on defense, Slay is the biggest cog to this franchise’s future. Martin has been good, but as a punter he isn’t able to take over a game like Slay did in the fourth quarter on Sunday. Riddick can—and has—but his value as a rusher has been limited thus far.
Regardless of your answer, Bob Quinn deserves some credit for all three of these extensions.