9:12am: A source tells Josina Anderson of ESPN.com (Twitter link) that, contrary to Meinke’s report, the Lions have moved on from Mosley. If that is indeed the case, it’s possible that Mosley’s camp is attempting to use supposed interest from the Lions to gain leverage with another team.
8:50am: The Lions’ interior defensive line has undergone some major changes this offseason, but the team may be able to maintain a little continuity heading into the 2015 season. According to Kyle Meinke of MLive.com, the Lions have interest in re-signing veteran free agent C.J. Mosley — a marijuana-related incident that resulted in a two-game suspension in 2014 isn’t blocking the defensive tackle’s return. Negotiations are ongoing, and there’s a chance a deal comes together as soon as next week, says Meinke.
While the departure of Ndamukong Suh was the most notable event affecting Detroit’s defensive line, the team also lost Nick Fairley to the Rams, bringing in Haloti Ngata and Tyrunn Walker to fill the hole at defensive tackle. One report in May suggested that the Lions may explore the trade market to fortify the interior defensive line, though team president Tom Lewand said last week that nothing was in the works on that front.
Suh and Fairley, arguably the two top defensive tackles on the market, grabbed the free agency headlines this offseason, but Mosley had a solid 2014 campaign as well. Pro Football Focus’ grades (subscription required) ranked him 26th out of 81 qualified defensive tackles, viewing him as slightly above average against both the pass and the run. Re-signing Mosley would give the Lions a solid veteran presence to complement a group that – outside of Ngata – is lacking in experience.
Still, a return to Detroit isn’t a lock for Mosley, who turns 32 in August. According to Meinke, the veteran defender is receiving interest from at least one other suitor, so the Lions may have to offer him for more than just a minimum salary benefit contract to lock him up.