Lions Add Defensive Tackle Jordan Hill to Trenches.
Detroit continues to build on a weak defense by adding defensive tackle Jordan Hill.
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The Seattle Seahawks selected Hill 87th overall in the third round of the 2013 draft. In his rookie year, he notched 7 tackles with 1.5 sacks in only four games. However, his production peaked the following year. Hill recorded 19 tackles, 5.5 sacks, 4 passes defended, and one interception in 2014. The Penn State standout had a nice start in the Pacific Northwest, yet injuries ultimately derailed his development. Seattle released Hill in October of this past year after the second season-ending injury of his career.
Detroit’s latest addition joins the hodgepodge in the middle of their line. The Lions signed Akeem Spence, another young tackle with upside, earlier this month. Either Spence or Hill could compete for the starting spot next to A’Shawn Robinson, who recorded 30 tackles and 2 sacks in only five starts. Regardless, Spence, Hill, Robinson, and Khyri Thornton, who was re-signed this offseason, make an intriguing rotation going forward.
What do these transactions mean for Haloti Ngata? The veteran’s age and declining play, combined with the influx of youth at the position, could spell the end for him. Detroit has roughly $3.5 million in cap space, and that’s before the details of Hill’s contract. Cutting Ngata would save the team about $5.5 million, freeing the Lions up to make additional moves.
With a roster in need of young talent, particularly on defense, adding a player like Jordan Hill seems like a savvy move. Detroit could certainly add a veteran at wide receiver to fill the void left by Anquan Boldin. Additionally, questions remain at running back, defensive line, and linebacker, so the Lions might not be finished in free agency.