Detroit Lions sign New England Patriots castoff LB Marquis Flowers

Dave Birkett
Detroit Free Press
View Comments

It seemed like a no-brainer when he was released — former New England Patriots linebacker Marquis Flowers reuniting with Matt Patricia and signing with the Detroit Lions.

And on Monday, it became reality.

The Lions signed Flowers when they returned to practice Monday, adding depth to one of the weakest positions on defense. To make room for Flowers, they waived linebacker Trevor Bates.

Jan 21, 2018; Foxborough, MA, USA; New England Patriots linebacker Marquis Flowers (59) reacts before the game against the Jacksonville Jaguars in the AFC Championship Game at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports

Read more:

Lions, Quandre Diggs, agree to 3-year extension

How Lions stack up against the NFC North

Flowers had 3.5 sacks in 16 games and made two starts for the Patriots last season after New England acquired him in a trade with the Cincinnati Bengals.

New England Patriots linebacker Marquis Flowers (59) sacks Tennessee Titans quarterback Marcus Mariota (8) during the second half of an NFL divisional playoff football game, Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018, in Foxborough, Mass. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)

Last year, Flowers credited Patricia for his development as a player, telling the Free Press at the Super Bowl, "I just want to thank Coach Patricia for everything he’s done for me."

Flowers appeared to be on the outs this summer with the Patriots, who tweaked their defensive scheme after Patricia left to take the Lions job in February.

The Lions, meanwhile, are thin in the front seven and can use Flowers' know-how in a defense that did not perform well in the preseason.

Philadelphia Eagles running back Corey Clement (30) catches a touchdown pass in front of New England Patriots linebacker Marquis Flowers (59) during the third quarter in Super Bowl LII at U.S. Bank Stadium.

Since setting their initial 53-man roster on Saturday, the Lions already have made three moves to the back end of their team. On Sunday, they were awarded two players off waivers, offensive tackle Andrew Donnal and cornerback Dee Virgin, and released a pair of offensive linemen.

The Lions also announced Monday that they signed John Atkins, another former Patriot, to fill the 10th and final spot on their practice squad.

Contact Dave Birkett: Follow him on Twitter @davebirkett. Download our Lions Xtra app for free on Apple and Android!


View Comments