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Saturday open thread: Should the Lions sign Jeremy Maclin?

With a little extra cap space, should the Detroit Lions add the recently cut receiver?

NFL: Denver Broncos at Kansas City Chiefs Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports

On Friday, the Detroit Lions were awarded $4.8 million in cap space as a result of their post June 1 designation for the DeAndre Levy release in March. In an article from Friday afternoon, I offered up several different choices the Lions could make with their newfound money. They could create a little leverage in negotiations with Matthew Stafford. They could save the money and roll it over to 2018, to help pay for some key free agents. They could even put some of that money aside and hope to lure Anquan Boldin back for one more year.

But later on Friday, the Kansas City Chiefs made a surprising move, cutting veteran wide receiver Jeremy Maclin just two years into a five-year, $55 million deal. The move did save the Chiefs $10 million, but so far the fans are not happy.

So today’s Question of the Day is:

Should the Lions go after Jeremy Maclin?

My answer: No. While the Lions could probably use a little bit of competition at the receiver position, especially if Detroit thinks Kenny Golladay isn’t ready to immediately step in as one of the top three receivers, Maclin just doesn’t seem like the right choice.

First, he’ll probably be a fairly expensive option. It’s hard to say where exactly his value lies, but considering his last contract averaged $11 million per year, it’s safe to say he’ll be earning more than someone like Anquan Boldin will be in 2017. The Lions are already spending the 10th most cap space on wide receivers in the league. If they add Maclin to the mix, they’ll almost certainly be among the top four spenders at the position.

Additionally, Maclin excels in the slot, and while Detroit may not have Boldin there this year, they do have a slew of candidates on their roster. Golden Tate could move inside if Golladay is ready to take outside duties. Eric Ebron may become more of a slot receiver now that the Lions have a few more traditional tight ends on the roster. Also, players like TJ Jones, Jared Abbrederis and Jace Billingsley could all potentially step in and play as a slot receiver, should the injury bug hit Detroit’s roster.

Maclin is more proven than any of these options, but adding him will cost the Lions on two fronts. First, it will likely cut their current cap space in half, something that really can’t afford to do with Matthew Stafford’s contract extension looming and slew of important, expiring contracts next season. Also, by adding Maclin the Lions will have to kick one of their promising young receivers to the curb come cut day. Maclin is already 29 years old, and to accommodate him, Detroit would have to get rid of a younger, cheaper option.

Would Maclin make the Lions better? Almost certainly. But it’s a poor use of what little money the Lions currently have. Hard pass.

Your turn.


Do you want the Detroit Lions to sign Jeremy Maclin?

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