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Sunday open thread: What should the Detroit Lions do with Theo Riddick?

Do the Lions need to do anything with Riddick and his contract?

Detroit Lions v Chicago Bears Photo by Quinn Harris/Getty Images

Now that we know the basic contract details of C.J. Anderson’s one-year deal with the Detroit Lions—around $1.5 million, with the chance to earn around $3 million after incentives—it’s time to reevaluate the team’s running back stable.

As we mentioned on Saturday, one thing that immediately sticks out is the contract of Theo Riddick. Assuming there’s nothing extremely out of the ordinary in the details of Anderson’s contract, Riddick ($4.625 million) will have a higher cap hit than Anderson, Kerryon Johnson and Zach Zenner combined.

Earlier in the offseason, there was a lot of talk among fans about releasing Riddick outright. The team would save over $3.6 million in cap space if they were to terminate his contract, while only eating $962,500 in dead cap.

But now that free agency is near its end, and the Lions have plenty of cap room to both sign their draft picks and carry extra money over into the season and beyond, Detroit doesn’t really have a need for extra cap space.

So today’s Question of the Day is:

What should the Lions do with Theo Riddick?

My answer: At this point, there’s really no reason to move on from Riddick, even though the Lions will likely be overpaying him for the kind of production they’re going to expect of him in 2019. It’s not exactly good business to keep bad contracts on the books, but the Lions have done well enough everywhere else—especially at running back—where they can take on his contract.

And let’s not act like Riddick doesn’t have some value still. Sure, his elusiveness is down from its peak, and he had a down year as a receiver in 2018, but Riddick is still the best pass-blocking back on the team, and he even showed towards the end of the season he can still be an offensive playmaker.

There’s really no harm in keeping him, and while you can create cap space by letting him go, you also create another need for depth at running back, and at this point in free agency, teams shouldn’t be creating more needs.

Your turn.


What should the Lions do with Theo Riddick?

This poll is closed

  • 7%
    Cut him
    (170 votes)
  • 49%
    Try to trade him
    (1087 votes)
  • 42%
    Keep him
    (940 votes)
2197 votes total Vote Now

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