The Detroit Lions began what could be a major overhaul of their offensive line today, informing right guard Stephen Peterman of his release, according to a person familiar with the decision.
The USA Today reports that the team has informed defensive lineman Kyle Vanden Bosch that he, too, will be released.
Peterman, 31, started every game at right guard for the Lions the last three years and has been a fixture on the line since 2007.
But Lions general manager Martin Mayhew said the team allowed too much interior pressure this year, which contributed to Matthew Stafford’s struggles at quarterback.
Vanden Bosch, 34, was due $7 million this season. The team will save about $5 million by releasing him.
Peterman ranked 14th in Pro Football Focus’ offensive-line rankings at right guard, and the Lions were third in PFF’s pass-block rankings as a unit, allowing just 29 sacks in an NFL-record 740 pass attempts.
With significant salary-cap problems, the Lions have targeted the offensive line as an area they can get younger and cheaper for next year.
Rob Sims will return at left guard and Riley Reiff will start somewhere – probably one of the tackle positions – after playing as a sixth lineman as a rookie. But the Lions 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 Dominic Raiola carries a $6 million cap figure.
Cherilus was PFF’s No. 2-ranked right tackle, behind the Cincinnati Bengals’ Andre Smith, and Raiola was the site’s No. 11 center and is one of the locker room’s most prominent voices. Backus, the 22nd-ranked left tackle, was the only Lions blocker in the bottom half off the league.
Nice to see that there will be a lot of changes from a disappointing season...to bad it seems like we keep starting over
Lions want to help cap space by getting younger on the O-line. Is this the same O-line constructed with 3 #1 and one #2 rnd picks? Geezuz, everywhere you look on this team only shows the inability of this organization to evaluate talent. O-line; #1 in 2001 Jeff Backus, #2 in 2001 Dominic Railoa, #1 in 2008 Gosdar Cherilous, #1 2012 Riley Rieff. That is a gross misallocatoin of resources to spend such high round draft picks on the O-line. Please, please, please let the Xanders hiring work out.
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As a Wolverine fan, be nice to see them go after Jake Long to help the O-line, but unlikely given their salary cap woes (especially if they pursue Reggie Bush). Looks like Long could be headed to the Bears.
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Colts reach agreements with RT Cherilus, four others By Dan Hanzus Around the League Writer Published: March 12, 2013 at 05:56 p.m. Updated: March 12, 2013 at 06:07 p.m.
The Indianapolis Colts had the cap space to be a player in free agency. They didn't waste any time getting to work on Tuesday.
The team agreed to terms with five players: right tackle Gosder Cherilus, cornerback Greg Toler, linebacker Erik Walden, guard Donald Thomas and linebacker Lawrence Sidbury. Terms of the deals have yet to be disclosed.
The biggest move here is Cherilus, who was brought aboard to help better protect quarterback Andrew Luck. A former first-round pick out of Boston College, Cherilus spent the first five seasons of his career with the Detroit Lions. He will replace the underwhelming right tackle platoon of Winston Justice and Jeff Linkenbach employed by the Colts last season.
Cherilus is a considerable talent, coming off a season in which he was ranked as the No. 2 right tackle by Pro Football Focus. There's risk involved, however. Cherilus -- set to enter his age-29 season -- has battled knee problems throughout his career. He reportedly traveled to Germany after the season for an alternative treatment on his right knee. He underwent microfracture surgery on his right knee in late 2010. Offseason Forecast: Colts Around The League examines what's next for all 32 NFL teams. Kareem Copeland covers the Colts. More ...
Despite those issues, Cherilus was a rock on the right side for the Lions. He's missed just four games in his career and played every snap but one last season.