Two weeks into free agency, the Redskins haven’t done much due to the crippling, $18 million NFL-imposed salary cap penalty. But that doesn’t mean their 2013 opponents haven’t been busy adding players, filling holes and reshaping rosters. Recently, we examined Washington’s NFC EAST foes, the Giants, Eagles and Cowboys. In the coming weeks, we’re going to check in with the rest of the teams who appear on the Redskins’ schedule next season.
2012 record: 4-12
Key acquisitions: RB Reggie Bush, DE Jason Jones and S Glover Quin
2013 outlook: The Lions were an enormous disappointment last season, slipping from 10-6 in 2011 to a miserable 4-12.
Which is odd considering the names on the roster. Matthew Stafford. Calvin Johnson. Ndamukong Suh.
They underachieved. They were undisciplined. They lost a lot of close games, including two in OT. But they didn't need to be blown up; they needed a tweak here and there. Which seems to be the approach GM Martin Mayhew has taken to this offseason. So far, he's retained some of the team's most important players, such as safety Louis Delmas and cornerback Chris Houston, and filled voids elsewhere.
Add Glover Quin to Delmas and Houston, and the Lions should have a unit capable of improving on last season’s struggles in the secondary. In 2012, they yielded 26 passing touchdowns (tied for 19th). Look for that number to be much better in 2013.
The Lions also added the player they wanted most: running back Reggie Bush. In the estimation of some, Bush will be the key ingredient for an offense that never recovered from the loss of Jahvid Best. Bush, 28, rushed for 2072 yards and 12 TDs the past two seasons in Miami. And if he's implemented correctly, it would not be a surprise to see Detroit's offense rank among the NFL’s most explosive next season.
I’m willing to give Jim Schwartz and Co. a mulligan for last season’s disaster. I also expect them to give the Redskins all they can handle when they visit FedEx field next fall.