The Shaun Rogers era is officially over in Detroit. Even though talent-wise he was the Lions' best player, his work ethic and attitude towards management never stood up. Forced to get rid of him, Detroit was still able to get great value.
Rumored to be getting Jonathan Vilma earlier this week, then Domonique Foxworth, news came yesterday that Rogers was going to Cincinnati for two picks. With the trade nearly complete, the league didn't sign off because of wording in the agreement. Miraculously, Matt Millen actually got a better deal from Cleveland. Rogers is now officially going to the Browns for CB Leigh Bodden and a 3rd-rd pick. Considering Millen's draft history, I am quite thankful that we got Bodden instead of another pick. The last thing the Lions need is another draft pick to waste.
Leigh Bodden is not known by most people outside Cleveland, but the small-school standout from Duquesne is one of the best cover corners in the NFL. Twice the player that either Fernando Bryant or Travis Fisher is, Bodden had six interceptions and 88 tackles last season. He's been injury-prone, but he did play all 16 games in 2007. Only 26, Bodden immediately becomes our best defensive player. With him and Ernie Sims anchoring our D, we're off to a good start.
One of our biggest weaknesses a week ago, our secondary is now pretty strong. With Gerald Alexander, Dwight Smith, and Bodden we have three very talented backs. Now, we just have to fill the other corner slot. That will come in the form of our first-round draft pick, possibly Aqib Talib from Kansas.
In other Detroit news, the Pistons have brought back Theo Ratliff. The role of the 5th big man has been a pretty popular position among the fans. Elden Campbell and Dale Davis have previously served at the end of the bench. It used to require size and girth because of Shaq's presence in the East. Now, with Shaq out west, Detroit can afford to bring him someone with a little more athleticism and speed.
While many thought Detroit would simply bring back Davis again, I love Ratliff's addition much more. Davis has been sitting out all year, but claims to be ready to play. Ratliff, meanwhile has been with Minnesota so we know he's in game shape. Hurt much of the year, Ratliff is now healthy and playing well. He's shooting 51% and blocking 2 shots a game. I'm confident he can come in and defend when counted upon.