Lions sign former Patriots linebacker Jamie Collins to three-year contract, per report

Jamie Collins' second stint with the New England Patriots will end after just one season. Following a return to Foxborough last offseason to join the club that originally drafted him in 2013, Collins has now inked a deal to join the Detroit Lions, according to Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network. It's a three-year, $30 million contract that includes $18 million fully guaranteed. 

Collins, 30, is now reunited with Lions head coach Matt Patricia, who was his defensive coordinator during his first stint with the Patriots from 2013-16. Over that stretch, Collins evolved into one of the more versatile linebackers in the NFL. From 2014-15, Collins totaled 204 tackles, 9.5 sacks, nine forced fumbles and three interceptions for the Patricia-led defense. That 2014 season also featured Patricia and Collins being a part of New England's Super Bowl XLIX championship team. To simply put it, they have history, so it's no surprise that they came back together in free agency.  

After a so-so tenure with the Cleveland Browns from 2016-18, Collins returned to New England on a one-year deal and enjoyed a strong campaign. In 16 regular season games (15 starts), Collins totaled a career-high seven sacks to go along with 81 total tackles, three interceptions and three forced fumbles. 

This signing does come off the heels of the Patriots also losing fellow linebacker Kyle Van Noy to the Miami Dolphins. It's noteworthy to point out this signing because it also comes at the hands of a former Bill Belichick disciple in Brian Flores. While both Van Noy and Collins are almost house-hold names throughout the league, their departures do represent how much more difficult it is becoming for the likes of Belichick to keep some of his best talent in-house now that more of his former assistants are out there making bids. 

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