One of the positions the Lions front office was expected to address in free agency was their two open cornerback spots. Despite looking for an upgrade, Martin Mayhew and the rest of the front office made it apparent they were not going to be dolling out long and expensive contracts like candy. Choosing not to go the big name route took the Lions out of the running for Jonathan Joseph and Nnamdi Asomugha. As a result, they went the cheaper route signing Eric Wright and now Houston.
Despite initially looking for a long-term contract, Tom Kowalski of MLive.com reports Houston ended up signing a shorter deal that pays him around $3 million each season. Houston's contract and Wright's combined is worth less than $7 million dollars, meaning the team was able to upgrade the whole position at a reasonable price. Houston is expected to continue playing at the left corner spot, while Wright has an early edge in the training camp battle for the right one.
Detroit acquired Houston just over a year ago from the Atlanta Falcons for a middle round draft pick. He provided a stabilizing force on the left side of the defense and played in 15 of the team's 16 games last season. The veteran recorded 56 tackles, had one pick and forced a fumble. All that is just icing though as the Lions' number one corner had 12 pass deflections, leading the team.
What the Houston signing continues to do is give the Lions options as they move forward in the team's development. By continuing to sign guys to short-term contracts, the Lions ensure they have the ability to constantly improve each position as needed.
The signing of Houston should complete the team's major free agent moves. The only major player the team has left to sign is restricted free agent defensive end Cliff Avril. Going into this offseason the Lions said retaining Avril was the first thing they had on their to-do list.
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