Sweaty Men Endeavors

The sports blog with the slightly gay name

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

So this is free agency... ?

Just when I think I might not have anything to write about, our Honolulu Blue and Silver fighting warriors serve up some material. Following up on yesterday's acquisition of Corey Bradford (which Evan and I have been batting around in the comments section) and re-signing of Eddie Drummond, the Lions have just reached an agreement with quarterback Jon Kitna.

Here's the part that might raise some eyebrows among Lions fans: According to the Detroit Free Press' Nicholas Cotsonika, Kitna has signed a four-year deal.

Is that noise outside my window the weather or the onset of a quarterback controversy? Is Kitna truly here as a back-up to Joey Harrington? If so, I think this is a very good move. But... how many back-ups get four-year deals? Doesn't that strike you as strange?

(We could get into a discussion of how NFL contracts actually work and whether most of them are actually played out, but that's probably another post entirely.)

Congratulations, Jon Kitna - you have now become Detroit's favorite quarterback.

(Has he always wanted to come here? Is that a Michigan hat on his head in this photo?)

As Big Al said yesterday at The Wayne Fontes Experience, what's been most disheartening (and perplexing) about the Lions' initial approach to free agency is their lack of urgency. What bothers me is the apparent absence of a plan. I see teams like the Redskins, Browns, and Vikings targeting their guys right away and jumping on them with contracts. The Lions seem to be sitting back to see what the market dictates while players that could fill obvious needs are getting snatched up.

But both Big Al and Evan brought up a point that's likely close to the truth: Matt Millen might think the players are already in place. (After all, that's essentially what he said when he fired Steve Mariucci, right?) Maybe he feels the Lions already made their big "free agent" move when they signed Sgt. Marinelli to be their head coach.

Of course, most of this agonizing will be moot if the Lions bring in someone like Julian Peterson, Simeon Rice, or John Abraham. Then it'll look like these guys are serious. But maybe our expectations are too high (though justifiably so, if you ask any Lions fan). Tom Kowalski said last week that the team was much more likely to sink money into re-signing its own guys than go heavily after other free agents.

But c'mon - that's no fun, is it? The offseason is our playoffs, man! Don't take that away from us, too!


  • At March 14, 2006 2:45 PM, Blogger Ian C. said…

    Further adding to the "Lions are focusing on re-signing their own guys" argument:

    Kalimba Edwards is staying in Detroit. Five years, $20 million (?!?!).

  • At March 14, 2006 2:53 PM, Blogger Big Al said…

    Jesus, I hadn't seen that yet! That's an awful lot of jack for someone who has not ever put together a consistent season yet. Hopefully Edwards becomes one of Marinelli's pet DL projects.

    It does look like Kitna is the only "Name" free agent splash they may make.

    I just said the same thing over at TWFE, we now have a full blown QB controversy. Would it truly be our Lions if there weren't one?

  • At March 14, 2006 3:03 PM, Anonymous Evan said…

    Marinelli must think he make Edwards into a stud. And realistically, if there's anyone who's going to do it...

    I really believe the Lions will at least try to sign one decent player and one obvious depth player then hit the draft with their high first rounder. With the offensive guys sure to go early, the Lions could snag a top five talent with their late top ten pick. Aren't a lot of sites and analysts predicting at least 3 QBs to go in the top ten?

    As for Kitna... I have no idea why he'd get a 4 year deal unless the Lions think he's the most ideal backup and they want some stability at the position. Perhaps Martz thinks if Harrington doesn't work out, he can make something of Kitna. Who knows? It doesn't seem like a BAD move, just an odd one.

  • At March 14, 2006 5:25 PM, Anonymous kevin said…

    Edwards re-signed = Yee Haw! I think the guy can be HUGE.

  • At March 14, 2006 6:10 PM, Anonymous susannah said…

    I heard Kitna on wjr this afternoon, and literally the first words out of his mouth were "I have a deep faith in Jesus Christ." Perhaps that has been Detroit's problem all along....? :D

  • At March 14, 2006 10:18 PM, Blogger Ian C. said…

    Evan, I think the free agency signings around the league might hurt the Lions in the draft. For instance, New Orleans probably isn't going to pick Leinart or Young now.

    QBs sliding down doesn't help Detroit, unless someone wants to trade up to get one. If Hawk or Huff slides down, however, that'd be nice. (Cross those fingers.)


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