It appears the Detroit Lions will go through another offseason with a heated long-snapper training camp battle. According to Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press, the Lions have re-signed veteran long snapper Don Muhlbach to a one-year contract:
Some late-night/early morning Lions news: LS Don Muhlbach has re-signed on a 1-year deal.— Dave Birkett (@davebirkett) March 3, 2017
Muhlbach has been with the Lions for 13 straight seasons. Now that the Lions have moved on from Dan Orlovsky, Muhlbach is the only remaining member of the Lions that was around during Detroit’s ill-fated 0-16 season in 2008.
However, Muhlbach will not be the presumed long snapper for the 2017 season. Last year, the Lions drafted Jimmy Landes in the sixth round and an intense camp battle followed. Landes may have very well won the job in training camp, but a shoulder injury that required surgery landed him on the injured reserve list, and the Lions were forced to go with Muhlbach in 2016.
This year, it appears Landes has the upper hand. He looks fully recovered from surgery and is even putting trick shot videos on Twitter. Meanwhile, Muhlbach will be 36 this year and while his long snapping remains quite dependable, his speed and strength on special teams duties has undoubtedly declined.
As per Pride Of Detroit tradition, we must celebrate the return of fan-favorite Don Muhlbach the only way we know how: With this amazing highlight package via Sandman.
#LONGSNAPPERWATCH2017 IS ON, Y’ALL.