Detroit Lions had one of NFL's best offseasons, Gil Brandt says

The Detroit News
Defensive end Trey Flowers highlighted the Lions' haul in free agency.

Gil Brandt is a fan of the Lions' offseason.

Brandt, the former longtime front-office executive of the Dallas Cowboys and now the senior analyst for, listed Detroit among his five teams that enjoyed the best offseason.

The Lions appeared to solve one of its biggest needs quickly in free agency in signing edge rusher Trey Flowers, while also upgrading a glaring weakness from last season in drafting tight end T.J. Hockenson at No. 8 overall, and adding tight end Jesse James in free agency.

Those moves helped place the Lions fourth on the Brandt's list.

"The Lions' most expensive offseason acquisition — signing former Patriot Trey Flowers — headlined a series of moves that should lead to improvement in Year 2 of the Matt Patricia-Bob Quinn pairing," Brandt writes. "Flowers has the kind of multiple-position flexibility that Patricia has been seeking on the defensive line. The upgrades to that side of the ball don't end there; we can also expect top-notch slot corner Justin Coleman and rookie linebacker Jahlani Tavai (drafted No. 43 overall) to make an impact."

The Lions also named Darrell Bevell their new offensive coordinator.

"... Bevell should bring an increased emphasis on the running game, which is where the value of rookie tight end T.J. Hockenson comes into play," Brandt writes. "... Hockenson — whom I listed as the sixth-best prospect in the draft — will help the ground attack with his blocking ability, in addition to being a potent receiving threat.

"Veteran signee Danny Amendola will provide Matthew Stafford with a quality slot receiver, but even beyond that, he will help Patricia get his message across in the locker room better than anyone in 2018. He joins Coleman and Flowers as part of the latest wave of Patriot-connected players brought in by Patricia and Quinn, who both cut their teeth in New England."

The Cleveland Browns led Brandt's list.