Joseph Addai Should Sign with Detroit Lions

Ray StoneCorrespondent IAugust 4, 2012

The Lions could use Addai's experience.
The Lions could use Addai's experience.Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

The New England Patriots abruptly released Joseph Addai last month amid rumors that he quit on his conditioning test.  The former first-round pick remains unemployed.    

After Week 1, NFL teams can offer non-guaranteed base salaries to veterans like Addai.  The Lions need to be the team to do that.    

With injury concerns looming, Detroit really needs more depth and experience at running back. 

We all know that there is too much uncertainty surrounding Jhavid Best's concussions—the latest report from Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press has him out of action for "weeks, not days."  After nine months off already?  That situation does not look good at all.  

Mikel Leshoure, who many expect to be the Lions' leading rusher, is hampered by a hamstring injury.  He lacks experience after missing his entire rookie camp and season due to injury.  He will also be suspended for the first two games of the season.

The team hopes Kevin Smith can finally stay healthy and be a steady performer this season.  Last season, Smith ran strong when he was healthy, but he has always had durability issues.   

Michigan native Joique Bell is returning home for his third season after bouncing around the league a bit, and he will have a chance to assume a significant role in the RB rotation.  

Third-year back Keiland Williams returns to the team for depth and special teams work.  

With such a young group, it would be really nice to add a veteran to the roster.

If Addai comes in ready to work, the 29-year-old would raise the overall talent and experience level of the Lions backfield.  He was a major cog in some very good offensive teams in Indianapolis with Peyton Manning.  

He may like the idea of joining the Lions' up-and-coming offense.  Addai can bring some valuable playoff experience and a veteran presence to the backfield.

In the best-case scenario, Addai wants to reestablish himself and prove he belongs in this league, essentially playing for a contract.  He would have a real chance to move up the depth chart on this roster, especially without Best around.

We may actually never see Best on the gridiron again.  Signing Joseph Addai seems to be a low-risk, possibly high-reward Plan B.    

GM Martin Mayhew and the Lions should plan to do that.