The Detroit Lions sealed their need for a cornerback when they released cornerback Nevin Lawson—which is now official. Now it appears the Lions already have a cornerback they’re looking to add.
According to NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero, the Lions are closing in on a deal with former Seahawks corner Justin Coleman, and it’s going to cost them:
The #Lions are closing in on a deal with former #Seahawks CB Justin Coleman that will make him the NFL's highest-paid nickel, source said. Big addition for Matt Patricia's defense.— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) March 11, 2019
For reference, last year the Dolphins gave Bobby McCain a four-year, $27 million extension, which made him the highest paid nickel on at the time.
UPDATE: Ian Rapoport is reporting the deal is agreed upon: four years, $36 million:
The #Lions are signing nickel CB Justin Coleman to a 4-year deal worth $36M, source said. The highest paid nickel in the NFL for the former #Seahawk.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) March 11, 2019
Coleman is just 25 years old and has been a significant contributor for the Seahawks defense in the past two seasons. Prior to his time in Seattle, he was with—you guessed it—the New England Patriots.
In 52 career games, Coleman has 126 tackles, 2.0 sacks, three interceptions, 27 passes defended and two touchdowns.
Here’s what one Seahawks fan thinks of Coleman:
Justin Coleman may not be a ”big name”, but he easily became a blue-chip nickel during his time in SEA.— Carter Donnick (@CDonScouting) March 11, 2019
Happy for the pay day, but very upset at not being able to retain him.
Flowers development has been fantastic, but Coleman was the leader of that CB group.
It’s a BIG loss.
It will be interesting to see how Coleman fits into the Lions’ plans. He appears to be more fit for the nickel corner position, which would leave the team still needing an outside cornerback opposite Darius Slay. However, we all know how much Matt Patricia likes versatility in players, and considering he has coached Coleman before, he likely knows exactly where he’ll fit in Detroit.
Of course, the deal still needs to get done.
Also, fun fact:
Now here's a fun fact: Justin Coleman and Darius Slay were high school teammates at Brunswick High in Georgia. Now they could be starting in the same NFL secondary very soon— Kyle Meinke (@kmeinke) March 11, 2019