It has been a busy week for the Detroit Lions, and it is only Tuesday. Yesterday, the Lions cut ties with troubled wide receiver Titus Young, today sees the release of team leader Kyle Vanden Bosch and offensive guard Stephen Peterman.
The moves seem to be the first moves of many in trying to restructure a lack luster team that ended the 2012 season 4-12 after coming off their first playoff appearance in 12 years in 2011. While the moves come quick on the heels of the end of the season, they do not come unexpected.
Titus Young Sr. had his twitter tirade, his on and off field antics (He was sent home by the organization three times in a seven-month span starting last May, when he punched teammate Louis Delmas during off-season workouts.) and then there was the lining up and running the wrong routes thing.
Team officials had attempted to get Titus Young Sr. some psychological help, even went so far as to set up appointments with a psychologist, however Young never showed. Former coaches reached out and tried to reel him in, to no avail. He was given every chance to redeem himself, and he chose to continue his destructive actions.
"I have been told that the organization has pleaded with Young to get help," beat reporter for the Free Press Chris McCosky wrote. "They have set him up with therapists. He has not cooperated."
E.C. Robinson, Young’s high school coach, said Young came to his house on Christmas and the two talked about his problems with the Lions.
“He did tell me he thought he was just as good Megatron,” Robinson recalled late last month. “I said, ‘Titus, come on.’ I said, ‘Come on, man. Who you talking to?’ I said, ‘Come on, you’re as good as that guy? This guy is the real deal.’ And he really believes this. And he was sincere about it. ‘Ah man, I’m better than him.’ I said, ‘No you’re not. Be real man. Come on.’ So I don’t know, I’m hoping for the best for him.”
Now it seems, Young has been signed off waivers by the Saint Louis Rams. Good luck with that Saint Louis.
KVB and Peterman presented almost as easy a decision, but without the theatrics (Red Eyes not withstanding). Vanden Bosch had seen dwindling numbers - ending the 2012 season with only 28 tackles and 3.5 sacks and no forced fumbles (in 2011 he had 26 tackles, 8 sacks 4 forced fumbles), but most of all it was a financial decision. KVB was set to receive a $2-million roster bonus in March and a $5-million base salary. His release saves the Lions about $5 million cap room.
Lions Teammates react to the release of Kyle Vanden Bosch
Heard they just release the one guy that took me under his wing, a great teammate, a great person, my brother KVB...
— Cliff Avril (@cliffavril) February 5, 2013
Kvb is the best pro I've ever been around.
— Andre Fluellen (@afluellen96) February 5, 2013
Peterman, the Lions starting offensive guard for the last 3 years, was due a $500,000 roster bonus in March. His departure could be the start of a major overhaul on the offense line. The Lions will have decisions to make at right tackle, where Gosder Cherilus is a free agent, left tackle, where Jeff Backus turns 36 in September, and center, where Raiola carries a $6-million cap figure. It wouldn't be far-fetched to think that the only player out of them to return would be Gosder Cherilus, but that all depends on how serious Martin Mayhew really is about overhauling that O-line.
Rob Sims will return at left guard and Riley Reiff most likely will see one of the Tackle positions - which is the strongest sign that Backus has played his last game in Detroit. Fox (T), Bill Nagy (G or C) undrafted rookie Rodney Austin (G) and Gandy (C) will have to step up to fill any holes not filled in free agency or the draft.
Mayhew said after the season that the Lions allowed too much interior pressure, which contributed to Stafford’s struggles at quarterback.
When asked how different his offensive line could look next season, Lions coach Jim Schwartz said at the Senior Bowl last month he was “prepared for a lot of different ways.”
“We have developed some pretty good players there and we have some good players in the pipeline,” Schwartz said. “If we think the best course of action is to go there then we’re prepared for that.”
h/t : freep.com mlive.com nfl.com