Report: Lions trying to trade for running back

All throughout the summer, Lions General Manager Martin Mayhew has resisted calls to look for backfield help outside the organization.

With Week One fast approaching, Mayhew may be changing his mind. Jason LaCanfora of reports that Mayhew has been calling other teams in hopes of dealing for a running back.  This doesn’t come as any great surprise. Detroit’s running back depth chart features Kevin Smith dealing with an ankle injury, Mikel Leshoure facing a two-game suspension and Jahvid Best on the PUP list because he can’t get cleared after last year’s concussion.

The news suggests that the Lions don’t have any interest in running backs on the open market like Kahlil Bell and Ryan Grant, although Mayhew may be pursuing multiple avenues in hopes of getting another body onto the roster. Names like Knowshon Moreno and Chris Ivory come to mind as trade options since they appear to have fallen out of favor in Denver and New Orleans, respectively. Some Lions fans will likely want to add Maurice Jones-Drew to the list, but there’s no sign that the Jaguars are planning to deal him.

The silver lining for the Lions in terms of their lack of backfield depth is that they have a pretty potent passing attack. Quarterback Matthew Stafford doesn’t sound too worried about moving the ball without much of a running game.

“We’ve been thin at running back before, so we kind of have a decent idea of what our game plan can be,” Stafford said, via Josh Slagter of

In other words, Cortland Finnegan and the rest of the Rams defensive backs should show up ready to work on Sept. 9.

62 responses to “Report: Lions trying to trade for running back

  1. Considering the Lions got knocked out of the 1st round of the playoffs because they were mostly “Megatron or bust,” and that the more you can run, the better chance you have of keeping Stafford healthy, he better care about having a running game.

  2. I heard Tiki Barber is available. I mean, he’s “flabbergasted” no one has called yet…

  3. If anything, the Giants proved last year you don’t need a good running game to win the big one, as long as you have a solid passing game and a good defense.

  4. Considering the Lions got knocked out of the 1st round of the playoffs because they were mostly “Megatron or bust,” and that the more you can run, the better chance you have of keeping Stafford healthy, he better care about having a running game.
    Really? I remember Megatron had over 200 yards and a couple touchdowns in that game.

    The Lions lost because Aaron Berry dropped a couple of Drew Brees’ passes that hit him in the hands and because the refs blew the whistle when the Lions Dline caused a sack-fumble. Durant scooped it up with a clear walk to the end zone but the refs prematurely blew the play dead.

  5. They problem for the Lions is nobody has to respect the running game! And as far as adding MJD The Jags need him just as bad and some day the Lions salary cap is gonna catch up to them! With all the presure Stafford will face because of a poor running game I would worry all it takes is one hard hit and Stafford is on IR! Hell he hit his own hand on a opposing players helmet! Yes I know it was his non-throwing hand but it still gets my point made!

  6. Pressure Stafford so he can’t throw to Megatron. Simple
    On Defense as long as you block that front 4 your fine against their secondary full of everybody elses nickel and dime corners.

    Easy ways to beat the Lions. Good teams do it. Bad teams get slaughtered
    Lion- winless against winning teams last year. Blewout teams with. 500 record or below.

  7. itssocoldinthed says:
    Aug 28, 2012 3:37 PM
    I hope its Moreno… he played well with Stafford and Georgia
    Possibly the last time the words hope and Moreno will ever appear in the same sentence.

  8. Would love to have a guy like MJD but it prob won’t happen!! So I would then like to c a Ben Tate or maybe even Knowshon! Remember even tho Moreno has been a bust to this point he is a good Reciever out of the backfield and he played with Stafford for a few years at GA so there has gotta be a lil chemistry there and remember he wasn’t a high 1st rd pick for nothing scouts saw something there!!

  9. Unless we’re getting elite talent I don’t want us giving up a draft pick 4 a depth chart guy we already have enough of those

  10. Blount and Tate are fairly interesting suggestions, but teams need 2 decent backs – look at Foster/Tate last year. Ivory is a good back and would be a solid option.

  11. Have the Lions fixed their defense that imploded the last couple games yet?

    Cause they aren’t making the playoffs without an improved D so no need to trade for a RB.

  12. Dolphins could probably get a 2nd for Reggie Bush. As a Dolphins fan, I wouldn’t mind that. RB is one of the few positions we have depth at, and it’s not like Reggie will get as to the Super Bowl this year. We are in full rebuild mode.

  13. stuj04

    The Lions should steal Travaris Cadet off of the Saints’ practice squad

    Travaris Cadet is not going anywhere ill take Cadet over Ivory

  14. Would the Lions be willing to trade 2 1st round draft picks for Ben Tate from the Texans? As a Texans fan, I would hate to see him traded but this is a business and those picks could help build the Texans.

  15. well miami has one of the deepest backfields in nfl the lions are deep at reciever can see d thomas and a 3rd going to lions for broyles or young

  16. They should look for a veteran role model for Leshoure and develop him after his suspension. Kid has talent and could benefit from being around a guy like Kevin Faulk, Thomas Jones, Ryan Grant or Joseph Addai.

  17. I really wouldn’t want Buffalo to do this but, Freddy Jackson for Titus Young and next years 3rd round pick. The Bills have CJ Spiller who has shown when Jackson was on IR that he could handle the job very well. The backfield is crowded in Western, NY with Freddy Jackson(starter), CJ Spiller(starter), Johnny White(Promising backup) and Tashard Choice(Gailey’s Golden Boy). Jackson is a little better than Spiller but is getting older. It might be time for Buffalo to go with Spiller and get what they can for Jackson. 90% of Buffalo would be upset by it, but it might work out in the end.

  18. People throwing out names like MJD, Gore, Tate, Blount, etc. are kidding themselves (especially the guy looking for TWO number one picks for Tate).

    Right or wrong, the days when teams made blockbuster trades for RBs is over.

    Mark my words, this will wind up being a waiver wire pick up or a very low round draft picked swapped for someone’s third stringer.

  19. sameer1138 says:Aug 28, 2012 3:14 PM

    I vote for the 9ers trading Frank Gore to the Lions for a 2nd round pick, and then SF can push forward with Kendall Hunter as the starter.

    You mean a 6th round pick.

  20. Actually, CJ Spiller would be a good target. Less to get him than Freddy Jackson and he fits the mold of Jahvid Best…. I could also see the Cardinals dumping Beanie Wells on the Lions now that Ryan Williams is healthy… Dion Lewis in Philly looks phenomenal…

  21. With the holdout of MJD, even if someone traded for him, you’d have to wait till next year to get anything out of him (C. Johnson held out and never returned to form, until late in the year). I’d like to see Ivory in a Lions jersey or Kahlil Bell, two guys that can move the chains and pick up the short yardage.

  22. lol

    Ok, so anyway:

    The Lions wouldn’t offer anything higher than a 4th rounder, and there’s no way that the Jags would take anything less than a 2nd rounder.

    And no matter what: The Lions are going to finish no better than 3rd in their division. Just reload for next season.

  23. dalucks says:
    Aug 28, 2012 4:12 PM
    Would the Lions be willing to trade 2 1st round draft picks for Ben Tate from the Texans? As a Texans fan, I would hate to see him traded but this is a business and those picks could help build the Texans.

    Jacksonville would never be able to sniff 2 first round draft picks for a top 5 back, and you are assuming Meyhew would give up the future for a back that’s never rushed for 1000 yards?

  24. Lions fan here. Everyone’s focused on giving up a 2nd rd pick, that was regarding shefters report all it would take for mjd and leshore.

    Joique Bell can be a stop gap for two weeks along w/Smith. Merano is not welcome in the D, he’s no dif than what we have already, injured rb.

    IMO I agree w/Chris Ivory! All the guy does is move the chains, run/catch and we can get for a lower pick and would be cap friend. He’s just waiting for the chance to start for a squad and explode.

  25. 2 1st round picks for Ben Tate? … I know Mayhew would like to get a good running back before the season starts but I don’t think he’s quite that desperate yet!

  26. The Lions want something for nothing. They have NO money.. NO real chance of contending for the title…an really nothing else to offer a good running back NOT EVEN a decent locker room full of good guys to play with…. Even the coach is a scumb bag. NOW WHY WOULD A GOOD RB GO TO DETROIT?

  27. As several others have said – ain’t no way we’re coughing up 2 first round picks.

    I also don’t see Titus Young going anywhere.

    In order to pick up a starting RB with a high salary, I think Cliff Avril’s salary would have to be traded. And that would be a major bummer.

  28. I love all the Bears fans spouting off. It’s hilarious that they think their D is better than the Lions’. Marshall does not make an 8-8 team a super bowl contender. It is just a matter of time before your oline implodes and gets your “star qb” on a cart. Please guys. This isn’t 1985, or 2006 for that matter. Your D sucks and your OL is even worse so spare me.

  29. Mayhew is looking now, instead of earlier, because cuts are coming up. A month ago, available talent was thin in the NFL, now it’s plentiful, as teams are willing to part with players to meet the absurd 53 man limit.

  30. I think a possibility of a waiver wire pickup would be William Powell from Arizona. I have watched him in two games now and he has looked terrific. He also fits the mold of the lightening back like Best.

  31. Take whoever the Patriots cut. The Rookie Bolden has good power, but if they cut Danny Woodhead, he is more like Best. Anyone high profile would destroy next years cap. Already too many starters will be free agents next year. Lions have too much Salary in Stafford/CJ/Suh.

  32. I think Leshore’s performance dampened the need for a runner. Plus the 1st two games are fine with out him.

    1. Running game won’t be needed as much vs. Rams.

    2. Probly won’t run much against the 49er’s anyway.

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