The Detroit Lions are still on the lookout for secondary help. They worked out veteran free-agent cornerback Champ Bailey Thursday afternoon.
The New Orleans Saints released Bailey, a 12-time Pro Bowler, last week after he missed most of training camp with a foot issue.
It’s not uncommon for the Lions to work out players during the week in the regular season. Most of the time those workouts occur on the players’ off day. In fact, the Lions reportedly worked out defensive backs Tommie Campbell, Roc Carmichael, Chris Clemons and Anthony Walters on Wednesday.
“I’m not going to go into detail about different guys we work out because that’s kind of the job of our personnel department,” head coach Jim Caldwell said Thursday when asked how Bailey’s workout went.
“Each and every week, particularly we do more so on our off day than anything else, we bring in a group of guys and work them out. What they (the personnel department) do is test the temperature and see where they are. Categorize them in case there’s a need and we’ll do that every single week. We had a bunch in yesterday and one in today.”
Cornerback is the one position on this Lions football team with the most question marks attached to it. They’re expecting a lot from the 34-year-old veteran
"I think we've got a great group of guys," Caldwell said of his current group. " I think we have a group of guys that are extremely focused. They have talent. They are young. Some of them have to get experience on the run. There are some with some experience and they are just going to have to play and play well, which we anticipate."
Bailey could add some depth to that group, and veteran leadership, if the 36-year-old still has something left in the tank. Hence Thursday's workout. The Lions simply wanted to gauge where the veteran is.
“He can bring wisdom and knowledge,” Mathis said when asked what Bailey could still bring to the table if signed by the Lions.
“Just knowing how to play the game. Knowing what it takes to get ready for a game. You can substitute for a lot of things, but knowledge is not one of them. To have extra knowledge never hurts.”
As a vested veteran, if the Lions were to sign Bailey, and he’s on the Monday night roster, his salary is guaranteed for the whole year. Oftentimes teams will sign those veterans after Week 1 when it's not fully guaranteed for the rest of the year.
Bailey is free to sign with any club.