The Athletic’s Ted Nguyen posted an article on Friday giving five top NFC free agents for value and fit (subscription required). While the full article is behind a paywall, a lot can be gleaned about the content relevant for Lions fans thanks to Nguyen’s tweet:
A few number 2/3 type of receivers got paid in FA this season but DET might have a potential number 1 in Chark at a bargain price.— Ted Nguyen (@FB_FilmAnalysis) March 25, 2022
Here are my top-five bargain free agents from the NFC: https://t.co/gwiSjg8yPy
That Nguyen loves the Chark signing by Detroit is not really a surprise, given how many analysts out there loved its fit and value. Our own fearless leader Jeremy Reisman pointed out the former Jacksonville Jaguar was a “high-character player” who was “exactly what they were looking for.” Right after the signing back on March 15, Bleacher Report’s Gary Davenport called the deal “a steal for Detroit general manager Brad Holmes” and “one of the best signings of free agency so far. A no-risk, below-market deal that could pay off in a big way.” Football Outsiders’ Mike Tanier felt Chark was “a solid acquisition.”
While the contract terms gave the team remarkable flexibility in this atmosphere of bananas wide receiver deals, there were early signs that Chark was a perfect fit for the Lions to pursue. Pro Football Focus’ Ben Linsey named the big, speedy receiver his perfect free-agent match for the Lions on March 11: “At 6-foot-4 with sub-4.4 speed, Chark could become the field stretcher that the offense is missing.”
Nguyen raised the usual concerns about Chark’s injury history but thought his size and speed combination offers a physical contested-catch threat the team hasn’t had since 2019. We thought so, too. Now, on to the rest of today’s Notes:
- Former Lions wide receiver KhaDarel Hodge signed a one-year contract with the Atlanta Falcons as a free agent.
- In case you were wondering about free agent contract terms for the Lions:
David Blough contract details are out:— Pride of Detroit (@PrideOfDetroit) March 25, 2022
$965K base salary ($150K gtd)
$55k signing bonus
$75K roster bonus
$55k workout bonus
Total cap hit: $1.15M, but with only $205k guaranteed
OTC with the details here: https://t.co/nvMMwSqVKG
No void years on the Mike Hughes contract. One year, $1.25M base, $2.25M cap hit. #Lions— Chris Burke (@ChrisBurkeNFL) March 26, 2022
- The Detroit Lions sent out an announcement over social media that registration for their 2022 summer football camps are still open, with discounts available at some of the sessions (though not at Ford Field, Allen Park, or Lil’ Lions Academies).
- As everybody expected, the Lions had good years from the offensive line, tight end (at least half of a year), and running back units but everything else was... not so good.
- Still, Pro Football Focus’ Doug Kyed says “there are people in the league who believe Detroit could take a lineman second overall” for some reason.
- Pass rush specialist Brandon Jordan held a pass rush summit in East Lansing at Michigan State’s facilities this past week. One of the players in attendance was former Detroit Lion Da’shawn Hand.
- MLive’s Kyle Meinke wrote about Cincinnati cornerback and Detroit native Ahmad Gardner who is set to have a pre-draft visit with the Lions.
- Also from Meinke:
The Lions have sent an email to season-ticket holders inviting them to a draft watch party at Ford Field pic.twitter.com/SvvsuFYqQE— kyle meinke (@kmeinke) March 25, 2022
- Football Outsiders’ Scott Spratt updated the adjusted games lost (due to injuries) data by position and posted results that include the 2021 season. The Lions appeared on lists of particularly hard hit position units for wide receivers, linebackers (where many edge rushers were included), and defensive backs. Reisman wrote more about this topic earlier in the week.