3 Super Bowl-winning Chiefs free agents the Lions should sign

The Detroit Lions were one step away from reaching the first Super Bowl in franchise history. Which free agents from the champs should Detroit target to help them take the next step?

NFC Championship - Detroit Lions v San Francisco 49ers
NFC Championship - Detroit Lions v San Francisco 49ers / Ezra Shaw/GettyImages
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The Kansas City Chiefs are once again at the top of the football world, and the rest of the NFL is playing catch-up. One of the teams with the brightest futures, and perhaps the best chance to take them down, is the Detroit Lions. Dan Campbell's upstart group beat the Chiefs at Arrowhead in Week 1 and were a game away from forcing a rematch in the Super Bowl, before losing a big lead to the 49ers in the NFC Championship. With free agency the next big date on the NFL calendar, are there any players from the back-to-back Super Bowl champions that the Lions should sign?

As Detroit icon Eminem said to open The Real Slim Shady, "May I have your attention, please," because the answer is an emphatic yes. The Lions are well-positioned to build upon this breakout season. The league's fifth-ranked scoring offense remains nearly completely intact, with Jared Goff, Penei Sewell, Amon-Ra St. Brown, Jahmyr Gibbs, Sam LaPorta, and David Montgomery all under contract at least through next year.

The defense is where the Lions could stand to improve, and with over $48 million in cap space and only two in-house free agents that will likely be made a priority (guard Graham Glasgow and safety C.J. Gardner-Johnson), that should leave plenty of funds for Lions general manager Brad Holmes to fortify a unit that gave up the most yards and tied for the third-most points allowed in the league.

Even if Chiefs general manager Brett Veach was the Mary Lou Retton of the salary cap, there's no way he could perform the financial gymnastics needed to keep his entire defense in town for a shot at an unprecedented three-peat. Let's look at how the Lions could stand to gain.

3) Linebacker Drue Tranquill would be a major upgrade over Derrick Barnes

If the Lions bring back C.J. Gardner-Johnson, there probably aren't any other major moves they could make to their secondary this offseason. Rookie Brian Branch was phenomenal in his first year, and though former Steeler Cameron Sutton had his ups and downs, the three-year, $33 million contract he signed last offseason doesn't provide a clear offramp until next year. Slot corner Kindle Vildor is a free agent, but it's not like the Lions are going to replace him with L'Jarius Sneed, so that rules the star Chiefs cornerback out as a potential target.

Linebacker is an area where Detroit has an opportunity to upgrade. Alex Anzalone and rookie Jack Campbell are fan favorites that are locked up for the next two and three years, respectively, but strongside linebacker Derrick Barnes' position is less assured. The former Purdue Boilermaker is coming up on the final year of his rookie contract, and his salary accounts for just over $1 million against Detroit's cap next season.

Drue Tranquill was extremely impressive in his first year in Kansas City, even being named by PFF as the Chiefs' "secret superstar" for the year. The former Charger was utilized in many ways by defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo: as a blitzer, a run-stopper, and a coverage linebacker, and he excelled in every way, helping turn the Chiefs defense into one of the NFL's best units. He would make a great addition in Detroit.