Watch CBS News

Here's The One Free Agent Pro Football Focus Thinks The Lions Should Sign

By Dan Jenkins

The Detroit Lions have many holes to fill in their roster this offseason. But the folks at Pro Football Focus think the team should focus its efforts on filling one hole specifically.

The NFL analysts posted a piece (by way of ESPN Insider) on Friday breaking down the free agent needs of every team, focusing on who each team's top target should be.

Who should be the Lions' main focus? Carolina Panthers defensive tackle Kawann Short.

"The Lions haven't been able to replace what they lost in Ndamukong Suh two years ago, but Short would represent a nearly like-for-like replacement. Short took a little while to warm up in 2016, but by the end of the Panthers' season, he was a whirlwind of destruction in opponents' backfields. He ended the year with 49 total pressures, 38 defensive stops and impressive PFF grades against both the run and the pass. Short, however, is likely to be given the franchise tag by Carolina."

The 28-year-old will be entering his fifth season in the NFL after being drafted in the second round in 2013.

Short has been a model of reliability, appearing in 16 games every season during his first four seasons. He posted a career-high 15 sacks in 2015, while helping Carolina have one of the top defenses in the game.

Unfortunately for the Lions, it doesn't sound like Short is going anywhere. Panthers coach Ron Rivera told the Charlotte Observer recently that team general manager Dave Gettleman will use the franchise tag on Short if a long-term deal can't be met.

If he has to use the tag, he'll use the tag," Rivera told the Observer. "But at the end of the day, as I said, we can use the tag or we can work a deal out."

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.