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Lions notes: Could Matt Patricia reunite with 2 veteran Patriots defenders?

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We know Patricia likes his former Patriots. Here are two more guys that would make sense in Detroit.

NFL: Pittsburgh Steelers at New England Patriots Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports

Matt Patricia, like many coordinators turned head coach, always seem to like reuniting with former players. We’ve seen him bring in guys like Tavon Wilson, Trey Flowers, Danny Amendola, Justin Coleman, and LeGarrette Blount among many, many others.

So it’s stands to believe that Patricia may approach free agency with some former Patriots in mind again this offseason.

Albert Breer of MMQB was thinking along those lines in his weekly column and threw out a couple of interesting names that would make sense in Detroit, and one that would make sense, but isn’t too likely. (Note: He is not reporting there is interest here, he’s simply thinking out loud.)

“It’s hard to see LB Kyle Van Noy going back to Detroit, where he spent two-and-a-half years, but both Devin McCourty and Jamie Collins were important pieces of past Matt Patricia defenses, and both could be affordable because of their age (each guy is in his 30s),” Breer wrote.

The Lions currently have a need for a veteran safety with youngsters Tracy Walker and Will Harris currently the top two on the depth chart. While Tavon Wilson is a likely candidate to be re-signed this year, the veteran safety seemed a little eager to face free agency when he recently talked with ESPN’s Michael Rothstein.

“(Wilson) tells me he would be ‘happy coming back to Detroit,’ but he’s also looking forward to going through the free agency process,” Rothstein tweeted last week.

McCourty could easily step into that veteran role with 10 years of experience in this defense.

As for Collins, he was linked to Detroit after the Browns released him in 2019. There was thought to be some bad blood between him and the Patriots—hence why they traded him back in 2016—but his return to New England in 2019 suggests that has washed over. Detroit could certainly use an upgrade at the linebacker position, and Collins had a productive season with the Patriots last year.

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