The Detroit Lions bolstered their backfield on Tuesday night signing former Chicago Bears running back David Montgomery to a three-year deal. Montgomery's deal meant the end of the line for former Lion Jamaal Williams' tenure in the Honolulu Blue, but the Lions are better off for it. Playing in Chicago, Montgomery had a first-hand look at the Lions twice a year. For his initial two years in the league he faced a castrated team under Matt Patricia, but the last two years it's been a different story under Dan Campbell. Here's what Monty had to say:
Why it matters:
Montgomery is a dynamic back that is only 25 years old. Yes, the Lions did offer a contract to a running back, which is typically not something that winning teams do, but the upside of the Montgomery deal is that it could only end up a two-year deal, and in 2023 it has a very small impact on the cap. Montgomery's ability to create, and the affection that Dan Campbell has for him, will allow the Lions to move on from the oft-maligned D'Andre Swift. Montgomery has already spoken about the “salivating” he's doing running behind the Lions' offensive line, a combination that could spell a rushing title in the next few years.
David Montgomery by the numbers:
- IN 2022 Montgomery saw an eight-man box 23.88% of the time.
- He was the 9th most efficient runner in 2022, with a rating of 4.1; in comparison, Jamaal Williams had a 3.57 rating and Swift clocked in at 3.66
- He had 201 carries for 801 yards and averaged 4 yards per carry.
The bottom line: David Montgomery is an upgrade
The signing of David Montgomery signals something for the Lions: they're to be reckoned with in 2023. There is no doubt Brad Holmes saw the ability to add Montgomery to this offense and not salivate himself. Quietly, Montgomery is a solid, borderline star running back. You just wouldn't it because he's played in the wasteland that is the Chicago Bears. And while the bears continue to rebuild, the Lions have built something that Monty clearly wanted to be a part of, for a couple of years at least.