Mike Daniels will go from chasing Matthew Stafford to sacking Aaron Rodgers twice a year in 2020
Mike Daniels, a Pro Bowl-caliber defensive lineman, has signed with the Detroit Lions according to Adam Schefter today. The Lions have already added two pro bowl-caliber lineman on the defensive side over the last twelve months in Damon Harrison via trade and Trey Flowers when free agency initially opened in March. Now, the Lions add a third player to that front in Daniels.
Mike Daniels was highly regarded as a veteran leader in the Packers locker room and someone that provided a good character presence, a character type that this front office has targeted in recent years. Adding players with impressive work ethics who can mentor young guys while filling roles and doing their jobs in the present seems to be the Bob Quinn way. After saving up a large amount of cap space this offseason, some fans were wondering what the team was planning on doing with all the extra space. It appears one answer has been revealed.
On the field, Mike Daniels shined with the division rival Green Bay Packers as well. In 2017 he played in 14 games, making his first (and to-date only) Pro Bowl. He put up 49 tackles (34 solo, 10 for a loss), and added five sacks. Pro Football Focus graded Daniels year last season through 10 games as the ninth best interior pass rusher with a pass rushing grade of 78.5 and an overall grade of 71.3 in a down year for him shortened by a foot injury. He joins Trey Flowers (89.7 PFF grade), Damon Harrison (91.9 PFF grade), A’Shawn Robinson (89.8 PFF grad), and Da’Shawn Hand (87.4 PFF grade). A defensive line with scores like that should leave opposing quarterbacks quivering in fear.
Mike Daniels was selected with the 132nd overall pick in the 4th round of the 2012 NFL Draft out of the University of Iowa. He will likely play a myriad of roles in the Lions defense next year along the defensive line including three technique and five technique, positions he played in Green Bay’s defense with success.
How Mike Daniels Fits In Detroit
Mike Daniels will not only bring high character to Detroit’s extremely talented defensive line room, but what he does off the field really makes a difference in the communities he helps. His work ethic will bring great things to young players P.J. Johnson, Da’Shawn Hand and others in practice. Additionally, he is familiar with a lot of the NFC North offensive lines, particularly the Packers, and could aid in game planning against his former team.
Another benefit to the Daniels signing is that it will allow Patricia to be more versatile up front depending on the opposing match-up. Daniels and Hand are more pass rushers on the inside, while Harrison and A’Shawn better run defenders. Patricia will now be able to rotate through two pass rushers and two run stoppers who can all play at a very high level. Mike Daniels’ Lions deal will be for one year, with $9.1 Million total, $7.8 Million guaranteed.