If you’re a Detroit Lions fan that was hoping the team would sign Pro Bowl defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson, I’ve got some bad news for you... and some worse news after that. Not only are the Lions not going to land the former Seahawks defensive tackle, but he’s going to a Lions’ division rival. The Minnesota Vikings announced Friday afternoon that Richardson has signed a one-year deal with the team:
Richardson joins the Vikings defensive line, which already features Pro Bowlers Everson Griffen and Linval Joseph. Last year, the Vikings had the No. 1 defense, both in terms of points and yards allowed.
Though Richardson’s statline was modest in 2017 (44 tackles, 1.0 sacks), he graded out as one of the best interior defenders in the league per PFF (83.8, 27th)
Detroit is still looking to make their first free agent signing on the defensive line. Although linebacker Devon Kennard may play a little edge in 2018, Detroit is currently pretty thin on the interior. Haloti Ngata recently chose to sign with Philly over Detroit, and although the Lions have met with a few interior options (Beau Allen, Ricky Jean Francois, Quinton Dial), they have yet to close a deal on any (Allen signed with the Buccaneers).