DetroitLions The Detroit Lions announced today that they have acquired T Greg Robinson via trade from the Los Angeles Rams for an undisclosed draft pick and signed free agent T Cyrus Kouandjio. Contract terms were not disclosed.
The Detroit Lions believe internally that they will make the jump to contenders in 2017, one big reason is that the Lions seemed to finally fix their long problematic offensive line in 2016, and a big reason for that was the emergence of rookie left tackle Taylor Decker. A first round pick out of Ohio State University, Decker played every offensive snap as a rookie, and many scouts expected Decker to become a star and perennial All Pro in 2017. Unfortunately for the Lions, Decker injured his shoulder this offseason, the injury required surgery and Decker is out indefinitely. There is no timetable for Decker’s return, the budding star is definitely out through the preseason, and while the Lions think Decker will play in 2017 it’s likely that he could miss the first month of the season if not more. In fact, there is a chance the Lions start the season with Decker on the PUP list, which would keep him out through week six.
The Lions initially seemed confident that Joe Dahl could step in and play left tackle until Decker returned, however, they are now scrambling which makes me question when Decker will return this season if at all. The Lions traded a sixth round pick to the Los Angeles Rams to acquire Greg Robinson, the second overall pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, who is widely known as a draft bust. I think that all of the “Greg Robinson is one of the biggest NFL Draft busts of all-time” talk is a little unfair, the guy is not quick enough to play left tackle in the NFL and has struggled with speed rushers, but he has also started 40 of a possible 44 career games. Ryan Leaf or JaMarcus Russell or Trent Richardson or Dion Jordan or Jason Smith or Gaines Adams are all bigger top five busts over recent years.
The Lions also signed tackle Cyrus Kouandjio, who was a second round pick by the Buffalo Bills in the 2014 draft, and was recently released.
My question is, if budding superstar Taylor Decker is expected to return in 2017, why are the Lions scrambling and acquiring tackles?