Detroit Lions impending free agent linebacker Justin Durant has once again stated his desire to stay in Detroit, and he wants to stay with the team beyond the 2013 season. Durant, who recorded 103 tackles this past season, is a key member of the linebacker corps and does an excellent job stopping the run. He’s one of the best downhill run-stoppers in the NFL, and that makes up for the strong-side linebacker’s major struggles in coverage.
Durant stated his desire to stick with the Lions to Sirius NFL radio this time (via the Detroit Lions official site), “I definitely want to come back to the Lions and I hope we’ll be able to get something going.”
“My agent (Adisa Bakari) said he’s talked to them a little bit and it sounded pretty good. Hopefully we’ll get something done.”
Both Justin Durant and fellow linebacker DeAndre Levy (plays at the outside linebacker spot opposite Durant on the weak-side) are set to hit free agency, and there are ten other impending free agents on defense besides those two. Some writers believe that the Lions won’t be able to sign both guys, and I would rather have Durant than Levy in the fold. Based on the thinking that the Lions can only keep one guy, an experienced second-year player will likely have to take the starting role at OLB.
One of Durant’s main reasons for wanting to stay in Detroit is the fact that he loves the fans, and he also professed his love for the city. Durant seems like a classy guy, and it would be unfortunate to see the 27-year-old veteran have to be thrown into the free agent waters once again. The Lions ability to stop the run would, in my opinion, significantly suffer with the loss of Durant, who has always been a great asset against the run since his days as a less-heralded player with the Jacksonville Jaguars.
On the bright side, the Lions official site wrote that the team would like to keep both Durant and Levy, and that’s the best way this team can about about their business at the linebacker position.
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