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2010 NFL Free Agency: Lions Begin Defensive Makeover With Vanden Bosch, Williams

DETROIT - JANUARY 3:  Head coach Jim Schwartz of the Detroit Lions looks on during the game against the Chicago Bears on January 3, 2010 at Ford Field in Detroit, Michigan. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
Gregory Shamus/Getty Images
Matt SCorrespondent IMarch 6, 2010

About a month ago, Zac laid out a strong argument I favor of the Lions building their identity through a strong defense. Now it looks like the front office may have the same idea in mind.

I firmly believe that football games are won and lost in the trenches. It's no secret that the Lions have been very poor on the defensive front in recent years, but hopefully that's about to change.

Yesterday, the Lions announced the acquisition of three-time Pro Bowl defensive end Kyle Vanden Bosch, and defensive tackle Corey Williams.

While these moves in themselves won't overhaul the defense, it does indicate that the Lions have a plan and are moving in the right direction, but it can't end here.

The Lions still need to draft one of the top two defensive tackles (Ndamukong Suh or Gerald McCoy) to complete the product. Vanden Bosch was most effective in Tennessee (under Schwartz) when he was playing next to Albert Haynesworth, a dominating defensive tackle. The Lions have the chance to add such a player in April's NFL Draft.

Corey Williams will add depth to the line. Sammie Hill showed good promise as a rookie last year, but he's still probably not an every-down NFL lineman. Williams, Hill, and either Suh or McCoy would make a formidable rotation in the middle of the defensive line.

In all, yesterday's acquisitions do a little bit more than put a Band-Aid on the defensive line situation, and it may tempt the Lions to look outside of defensive tackle with their first pick, but they shouldn't.

The Lions now have the opportunity to put a very solid defensive line on the field next year: a building block.

The Lions won't be fixed in one off-season, but it's encouraging to see them move in the right direction, and it's encouraging to see that they have an actual plan.

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