According to a published report from ESPN’s Adam Schefter, the Detroit Lions have agreed to terms and will sign former Oakland and NY Jets wide receiver Chaz Schilens.
Schefer, citing a league source, presents Schilens as a “depth” move behind Calvin Johnson, and I would agree with that analysis. Detroit has their #2 and #3 wide receivers (Nate Burleson and Ryan Broyles) returning from injury, and Schilens provides an “upside” play in the short term.
Schilens hasn’t always produced on-field value (just 1,191 yards and 100 catches in his career) but he has a certainy level of “hype” surrounding him based on training camp and pre-season reports from previous years. The upside is certainly there for the 6-foot-4, 225 pound receiver, and with no expectations, this is the kind of move that could “pop” for the Lions when pairing him with a quality quarterback in Matthew Stafford with zero attention on him when he’s on the field.
The 27-year-old Schilens produced only 289 yards and 2 touchdowns last year in New York, and frankly, this move could be non-essential if Broyles and Burleson are healthy and on the field. However, I think this is a sneaky-good move for the Lions as they attempt to surround the Johnson/Stafford duo with quality talent in the short term.