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The NFL season is now officially over, and you know what that means – it is time to open up rumor central! Detroit Lions rumors will be front and center for the next three months or so as the front office determines which free agents they need to resign, and which guys on the open market they want to pursue.

The Lions are a hard team to figure out, just ask anyone who roots for the Honolulu blue and silver on a weekly basis. One positive of having a disappointing season is getting a high draft pick. The downfall to that is paying an unproven player a high salary right from the get-go.

With that in mind, coach Matt Patricia and GM Bob Quinn are going to take a long hard look at the free agent market this offseason – and they may start with their former team.

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Addition by subtraction?

The Detroit Lions have several key players who are eligible for free agency this offseason, so do the New England Patriots. In what is known as the “Patriot Way,” New England is known for not keeping guys who are searching for a huge payday. Right now, Patriots defensive end Trey Flowers is just that guy.

Flowers has been a beast for the Patriots the past two seasons and is primed to hit the open market this summer if he chooses to.

According to 247 Sports, Flowers will be sought after by many teams, including the Detroit Lions. The CBS affiliate makes a great point that if Flowers were to leave, heading to Detroit may be something that is very realistic considering his great relationship with Matt Patricia.

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Flowers may be in for a nice pay raise, but if the Lions and Ziggy Ansah part ways this offseason, Flowers would be a great pick-up, and he wouldn’t cost half of what Ansah did.

Ansah made over $17 million last season in Detroit, while Flowers made just over $2 million in New England.

Another free-agent to be that makes sense for the Lions to look at is wideout Cordarrelle Patterson.

As reported in the NY Post, Patterson is a versatile weapon that would see a lot more playing time with a different team. Patterson’s blazing and versatility makes him an attractive addition for Detroit, especially considering he has the potential to be a breakaway kick return man.

Patterson averaged 28.8 yards per return in 2018.

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Lions free agent list

If the Lions signed Flowers, they surely could let Ziggy and his huge contract walk away. In Flowers, you get a 25-year-old proven talent who already knows Patricia’s system. Ansah, who has been injury prone, is going to be 31 on May 29.

Besides Ansah, 21 others are scheduled to hit the open market including Levine Toilolo, Ricky Jean Francois, Luke Willson, LeGarrette Blount, TJ Jones, and Zach Zenner.