Tuesday, March 11, 2014
Golden Tate to visit Lions
By Michael Rothstein
Though the Detroit Lions didn't make many moves in the opening flurry of free-agency festivities, they seem to be plotting to make some moves soon.
Per ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter, wide receiver Golden Tate is headed to Detroit on Tuesday night for a visit and the team has expressed interest in safety Chris Clemons.
For now, these appear to be the two top-line targets for Detroit in the first days of free agency.
Tate is a versatile receiver who can play both outside and in the slot. Although he's shorter than the typical Jim Caldwell wide receiver, he has the speed, explosiveness and return skills that could make him a valuable asset to the Lions if he were to sign. Tate has improved each year in Seattle, going from 21 catches and 227 yards as a rookie to 64 catches for 898 yards and five touchdowns last season.
At 25 years old, the 5-foot-10 product of Notre Dame is hitting the prime of his career and could fill the role left by Nate Burleson both as a receiver and a voice in the locker room.
As for Clemons, he appears to be the safety the Lions are going to focus on since Jairus Byrd -- who is likely too pricey for Detroit -- is on a plane to New Orleans and T.J. Ward signed with Denver. Clemons, who went to Clemson, had 190 tackles and three interceptions over the past two years.
Clemons graded out at a plus-7.2 in pass coverage according to Pro Football Focus last season and would fit what the Lions want as far as a coverage safety to pair with Glover Quin.
The Lions did sign receiver Kevin Ogletree in the first moments of free agency and The Baltimore Sun is reporting that deal is worth $795,000, including $100,000 guaranteed and a $65,000 bonus.