July 12, 2024

SIGNING: The Lions’ QB is over for now new deal with the…..

 

After a few days without a signing, the Detroit Lions are back to making moves. On Monday, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported that Kevin Zeitler would sign with the Lions on a one-year deal on Tuesday with a physical pending. According to The 33rd Team’s Ari Meirov, the deal supposedly has a $6 million base, but no other details have come out yet. Zeitler replaces guard Jonah Jackson, who signed with the Los Angeles Rams, but expect Zeitler to play right guard and Graham Glasgow to move back to left guard.

Last week, the Lions were active in the first week of free agency, and it ended with the signing of defensive tackle DJ Reader. Most Lions fans thought that was the final splash move the team would make, but general manager Brad Holmes was still in the kitchen cooking up some deals and came away reinforcing an already strong offensive line.

Zeitler was a first round of the NFL Draft in the 2012 NFL Draft with the Cincinnati Bengals. After five solid seasons with the Bengals, Zeitler moved on to the Cleveland Browns for two seasons, then did the same stop with the New York Giants, before heading to the Baltimore Ravens for the last three seasons.

Let’s take a look at how Zeitler joining the Lions helps Detroit’s offensive line, changes their draft plans overall, and puts this team at the doorstep of a Super Bowl appearance and possible championship.

How good is Kevin Zeitler?

Coming off, surprisingly, his first Pro Bowl season Zeitler is one of the best guards in the NFL. Zeitler is an instant upgrade over Jackson, and while Zeitler plays right guard—compared to Jackson playing left guard—it’s still a great move by the Lions to sign him. One of Zeitler’s greatest strengths is his ability to stay healthy. If you have been following the Lions the past few years, you know that the offensive line rarely operated at full strength, as multiple players would miss time, forcing backups to play. Since getting drafted in 2012, Zeitler has only missed 12 games in his career.

Last season, according to PFF, Zeitler was ranked 15th in overall offensive grade for guards who played at least 20% of snaps with a grade of 71.6. When it came to pass blocking, he was ranked second with a grade of 82.5, while run blocking wasn’t as strong, getting a grade of 62.4, ranking him tied for 27th.

His overall PFF grade history has been very solid, with his worst year being in 2020 with a grade of 65.9. Outside of 2020, his grades have been in the range of 71.6 to 88. Zeitler is a better pass blocker than run blocker, as his grade ranges have been between 68.7 and 91.7. His run blocking isn’t his greatest strength as his range of grades for that has been between 59.7 and 82.8.

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