The Lions have until July 16 to sign franchise-tagged defensive end Ziggy Ansah to a long-term deal. It sounds like they won’t need that long.
pearing this week on PFT Live, Lions G.M. Bob Quinn seemed to indicate that the team is more likely to take a wait-and-see approach with Ansah in 2018, before deciding whether to make a multi-year commitment. Quinn spoke in terms of new coach Matt Patricia getting to know what Ansah. In theory, Patricia could see enough to conclude that a long-term contract is justified before the deadline for finalizing a deal — if Ansah signs the tender and shows up for the offseason program.
Barnes didn’t have that in his game two seasons ago, and perhaps not even last season. He barely ran the pick-and-roll, and when he did, it was stilted. His game has tilted a hair more toward traditional perimeter play this season. He’s setting fewer screens, and navigating around more as a ball-handler. His drives are up, and his isolations are down, per NBA.com and Second Spectrum. He is attacking the rim with a new physicality, especially when he goes left.
He’s jacking about 1.5 more 3s per game over last season, and a lot of the jump has come via tougher off-the-dribble bombs. He has hit 38 percent of those. His rebounds, assists and free throws have all ticked up.
But the gains are small. Two dimes and four free throws per game is still low considering how often Barnes has the ball. Barnes is growing. The NBA is really hard. Some players never grow at all. But Barnes’ growth has come in small increments.
“People think you have to be knocked out to have a concussion,” Rypien told The Spokesman-Review, via the Associated Press. “There are hundreds of times you shake it off and get back in there. It’s all about the cumulative hits. That’s what cause brain damage.”
Rypien, 55, said he has attempted suicide and suffers from persistent depression, anxiety and isolation. He once left a 20-minute audio suicide message, he said, and another time his wife, Danielle, found Rypien after he swallowed 150 Advil with a bottle of wine.
“It was the thought that people aren’t going to miss me,” Rypien said. “I was shameful and guilty of poor decisions, shameful and guilty of being depressed all the time. I didn’t want to be around anymore.”
Rypien, who spent six seasons with Washington, hopes his story helps others.