Rebuilding The Lions

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Justin Vanfulpen -

PONTIAC- The season for the Lions is not over by any means, they have 7 of the final 12 games at home where they normal play well. With road games at San Francisco, at Arizona, at Chicago, at Tampa Bay and at Pittsburgh, all these road teams have winning records but they certainly are not unbeatable. So we will just have to wait and see what happens this season, but after this campaign, no matter what the Lions record is, there is going to have to be some player movement.

Here is a look at what some of the rumors and whispers about some of the movements that has been suggested in the Silverdome offices.

1. Releasing wide receiver Herman Moore. He has been injured for the past 3 season and now is on the IR list, another thing besides his history of injuries is that he is not a West Coast Offense wide receiver. This rumor has been flying around the Silverdome since he redid his contract this past season, and it will happen sometime after the season or after July 1st, 2002.

2. Releasing defense end Tracy Scroggins. Many people in the Lions organization wondered why he was re-signed in the first place, he is past his prime and no longer can rush the passer like he used to be able to do. He does have one more year on his contract after this season, but most likely will be gone.

3. Not re-signing line backer Allen Aldridge. The Lions are looking for more speed out of the linebackers and Aldridge just doesn't have it. He won't be re-signed.

4. Not re-signing safety Kurt Schulz. He is a decent safety when he can stay healthy but he has not been able to do that, plus his age is catching up with him and the Lions front office wants to get younger. He is out right now and the Lions don't know if he will be back this season, right now he is having difficulty regaining the strength in his legs not a good sign.

5. Not re-signing cornerback Bryant Westbrook unless he is 100 % back to full strength. Westbrook has been working hard to recovery from Achille' tendon surgery this season and the Lions don¡¯t know when he will be back. He still can't explode out of his breaks, and there is a possibility he never will. Lions might look else where for a starting cornerback, in the free agent market or if they have to the draft.

6. Releasing middle linebacker Stephen Boyd. I'm sure this is shock for some of you to see this up here, but there has been talk about it. It looks as if Boyd will be out for a while now and Boyd is think long and hard about walking away from the game he loves, because of his bad back. If Chris Claiborne does a good job at the middle linebacker spot the job could be his and Boyd could be gone either by him walking away on his terms or the Lions cutting him.

7. Not re-signing either tight end, David Sloan or Pete Mitchell. One could be re-signed but the Lions front office would like to upgrade this position and are thinking about doing it in the draft, since there is a good group of tight ends coming out this season.

8. Cutting quarterback Ty Detmer. The Lions wasted a fourth round draft choice on him, and they expect Mike McMahon to be the starter or the back up next season so that leaves no room for Detmer on the roster.

9. Rumors that these other players won't be on the roster next season: The Lions won't re-sign safety Tommy Bennett. Linebackers Scott Kowalkowski and Clint Kriewaldt won't be on the team next season as the Lions front office look to overhaul their linebacker core, and want to add speed and youth to the group. Full back Brock Olivo won't be back as the Lions look to add a playmaker in the full back role with some offense skills.

10. Lion's front office doesn't know what it wants to do with wide receiver Germane Crowell. The Lions like his ability but he hasn't show consistency in catching the ball and running good routes, but they still like his raw talent so he could be back next season.

Some free agents to be in 2002 that the Lions front office like are:

1. DE Kenny Mixon, Miami Dolphins

2. LB Sam Cowart, Buffalo Bills

3. LB Kevin Hardy, Jacksonville Jaguars

4. LB James Farrior, New York Jets

5. LB Jeremiah Trotter, Philadelphia Eagles

6.CB Duane Starks, Baltimore Ravens

7.CB Dainon Sidney, Tennessee Titans

8.CB Corey Chavous, Arizona Cardinals

9. CB Artrell Hawkins, Cincinnati Bengals

10. S Eric Brown, Denver Broncos

11. S Shaun Williams, New York Giants

12. WR Donald Hayes, Carolina Panthers

13. WR Jerome Pathon, Indianapolis Colts

14. WR/PR Az-Zahir Hakim, St. Louis Rams

15. WR Jacquez Green, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

16. WR Reidel Anthony, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

There is also many players that the Lions front office and scouting department like that will be in the 2002 draft, but there is not a great feel for that list or the players that the Lions are focused on. The reason being because the draft is several months away, but by the first of December, this list will be taking shape, and as soon as I find out I will be bring you that info as well.

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