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Lions Make It Official With Foote

The Detroit Lions officially signed former Pittsburgh Steelers starting linebacker Larry Foote to a one-year contract today, the team announced.
A Detroit native, Foote has apparently embraced the idea of going to a team that went 0-16 last year after winning the Super Bowl last season with the Steelers.
“It’s my home,” Foote told the team’s official Web site. “So, that was always going to be in the back of my mind, what it would be like playing at home. With the way things were going in Pittsburgh, I saw the Lions get a new coaching staff and thought, ‘What a great opportunity to come home.’”
However, Foote isn’t guaranteed a starting job at middle linebacker, according to Nicholas J. Cotsonika of the Detroit Free Press.
“The point we made with him is the same point we made with every player on the team,” Lions coach Jim Schwartz said today during a radio interview with WRIF. “When he does sign on that line, he’s not signing as the starting middle linebacker. He’s signing to compete for the starting job. We’re going to play the best player, whether it’s quarterback, whether it’s middle linebacker, and what he’s done in the past, what he did at Michigan, what he did at the Pittsburgh Steelers, really means nothing to us now.
“It’s who produces right now. We wanted to be very clear with him yesterday that he was on the same page, and he is. He’s a competitor. He likes to play. He likes to practice. He likes to prepare. It was important that he was on the same page that we were in terms of the starting job.”
Foote played in Pittsburgh for seven seasons, leading the Steelers with a career-high 123 tackles in 2005 as Pittsburgh won the Super Bowl at the Lions’ Ford Field.
Now, Foote, who was due a $2.885 million base salary this year under his old Steelers contract, gets the fresh start he was looking for after being replaced in Pittsburgh by Lawrence Timmons.
As per club policy, financial terms weren’t disclosed.

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13 Responses to “Lions Make It Official With Foote”
  1. killwithme says: May 6, 2009 2:50 PM

    the last time Gunther tried to take a Pittsburgh 3-4 linebacker and put him in a 4-3 system, Chiefs fans got to watch Kendrell Bell embarass the team on a weekly basis.

  2. EverybodyGotAIDS says: May 6, 2009 2:56 PM

    So with the Steelers giving Foote the boot, it sounds like Foote still isn’t a shoe-in for the job in Detroit.

  3. WorldChampionBears2008 says: May 6, 2009 3:02 PM

    @ killwithme
    Well he’ll feel right at home won’t he.
    Amazing how the Lions keep bringing in Champions and never tasting a championship themselves.
    I mean you hosted the championship for god’s sake and still nothing.

  4. Pea Tear Griffin says: May 6, 2009 3:07 PM

    If you’re a starter on the leagues best defense, you’ll most likely be a starter on the leagues worst…

  5. The Jimmy says: May 6, 2009 3:11 PM

    Kendrell Bell was in a sharp decline ever since his rookie season. He wasn’t smart enough to do anything other than rush the qb from the middle. Foote shouldn’t have that problem.
    Whatever they’re paying Foote, he should be able to make a good bit more doing endorsement deals and should set himself up for his post NFL career. Foote is no fool.

  6. BSK says: May 6, 2009 3:14 PM

    That’s funny Schwartz. If you start somebody other than Foote he better make the pro bowl – If an 0-16 team can’t use a guy that started on the super bowl champs that would be downright funny. No wonder that team is such a disgrace.

  7. korikill says: May 6, 2009 3:32 PM

    Sims, Foote, Peterson.
    Yes.

  8. burley29 says: May 6, 2009 4:58 PM

    BSK…
    You can’t rag on Schwartz for the 0-16 or for saying he has to earn the starting job. First of all Schwartz is a first year head coach that had nothing to do with the 0-16 mark. This is the NFL, and no matter what the best player needs to play and if it isn’t Foote, then so be it.
    That said, I will streak the practice facility in Allen Park if Foote doesn’t earn the starting job considering that his “competition” consists of DeAndre Levy (rookie OLB from Wisconsin), and Jordon Dizon (Second year shrimp with approximately 0 NFL potential other than special teams). The guy is a lock to start on this team even though he has to “earn” it.

  9. Darth Ringo says: May 6, 2009 5:33 PM

    BSK says:
    May 6th, 2009 at 3:14 pm
    That’s funny Schwartz. If you start somebody other than Foote he better make the pro bowl – If an 0-16 team can’t use a guy that started on the super bowl champs that would be downright funny. No wonder that team is such a disgrace.
    —————————————
    Yes, but it sends the message to ALL the players they have to hustle and work hard. Smart thing for coach Jim Schwartz to say.

  10. WalkerSteel says: May 6, 2009 5:35 PM

    “career-hgh” What an appropriate typo.

  11. mitchrapp says: May 6, 2009 5:47 PM

    He’s starting. And it’s a good sign. Just over 3m is a bargain for him.

  12. JimmyLions says: May 6, 2009 6:34 PM

    What’s nice is that Foote wants to be a contributor both on and off the field. He’s interested in doing what he can to help the recovery of both the Detroit Lions and the Detroit Metropolitan community.

  13. bigwalt2990 says: May 6, 2009 8:55 PM

    http://my.wrif.com/mim/?p=2101 for the interview today. Schwartz ROCKS!!

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