The Detroit Lions have set up a meeting with Buccaneers free-agent defensive end Dewayne White, RoarReport.com has learned via league sources.
The visit, expected to take place on Friday, will mark the first of many free-agent guests the Lions are expected to entertain over the next 72 hours.
What makes White's visit ironic is that if a signing occurs it would come on the heels of the same-day exit by defensive end James Hall. Hall was dealt to the St. Louis Rams Friday morning in exchange for a fifth-round pick.
White, however, is considered one of the premier defensive ends in free-agency. Not necessarily because of a standout career, which he hasn't had, or even a great contract year, which he didn't have. In fact, White has been primarily a solid role player since the Buccaneers drafted him in 2003. He has accrued a mere 14 sacks in those four years, registering five in 2006.
"White has been mostly used as a third end over his career but has a high upside and can also play inside if needed," said Scout.com NFL analyst Adam Caplan.
And that is likely where White's value resides. Besides his versatility, White is among very few high-caliber defensive ends in free-agency. His only competition in the market could be Falcons' UFA Patrick Kearney, who is on the downside of his career.
White also played under Lions head coach Rod Marinelli when Marinelli was the defensive line coach in Tampa Bay. With the trade of cornerback and Pro Bowler Dre' Bly, a part of a roster revolution on the defensive side of the football, the Lions are clearly only interested in players that are capable of playing in the team's Tampa Two defense. And White fits the bill perfectly.
White's recruiting trip in the Motor City is expected to be followed immediately by a visit from Kansas City middle linebacker Kawika Mitchell.
Curtis in Minnesota: Rams' unrestricted free-agent receiver Kevin Curtis is visiting with the Minnesota Vikings first, but will eventually land in Detroit -- likely by early next week. Although the Vikings are desperate for receiver help, Curtis is eager to work with former Rams head coach and current Lions offensive coordinator Mike Martz again. Martz has lobbied hard for the Lions to sign Curtis this free-agency period.
The only note of interest is whether or not Detroit truly intends to sign Curtis, or spend the No. 2 overall pick on Calvin Johnson. If Curtis is signed, it's likely the Lions will pass on Johnson (and forfeit potential trade interests). If Curtis signs elsewhere, and Detroit doesn't make a push for Eagles UFA Donte Stallworth, late April could get interesting.
Holt to AZ?: Unrestricted free-agent safety Terrence Holt, who never received a tender from Detroit, is likely to bolt to the desert, says Scout.com's Adam Caplan. The Cardinals are in need of a free-safety, and have set up a meeting with Holt for sometime this weekend.