Lions add linebacker depth, sign Jonathan Freeny

The Detroit Lions added more linebacking depth Monday morning, announcing the signing of Jonathan Freeny.

Freeny, 28, split last season between three rosters, finishing the year with the New Orleans Saints. The two previous years, he played for the New England Patriots, appearing in 18 games for the franchise, including 11 starts. During the stretch, he recorded 33 tackles and a sack.

Widely regarded as a top-10 talent in last spring’s draft, Foster slid down draft boards because of character and injury concerns. The linebacker was sent home from the combine last March for arguing with a hospital worker. Foster started 10 games for the 49ers this past season, tallying 72 tackles.

With his latest arrest, Foster is subject to potential NFL discipline under the league’s personal conduct policy.

Current Panthers owner Jerry Richardson remains under investigation for alleged workplace impropriety and sexual harassment, with the inquiry being led by Mary Jo White. She is at work, Goodell said. I haven’t gotten an update from her in the last 30 days or so. But when she has completed her investigation, I certainly will meet with her and you will be aware of it also. Goodell added that the timeline of the investigation will not be influenced by the sale of the Panthers.

On the sale of the Panthers, Goodell added that the process is moving along with unprecedented interest and said he hopes owners will vote on the transition of ownership at the next owners meetings in May.

On former 49ers safety Eric Reid, one of the most socially active players who remains unsigned several weeks into the new league year, Goodell said: The 32 teams make their individual decisions on the players they think will best help their franchises.


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