Jeff Backus retires from Lions

The Detroit Lions lost right tackle Gosder Cherilus already in free agency.

Now, they’re losing left tackle Jeff Backus, who has decided to call it a career after 12 seasons in the NFL.

The club announced this afternoon that Backus, the Lions’ first-round draft pick in 2001, is retiring. Backus set a club record with 186 consecutive starts as a stalwart on the left side and that streak was snapped back on Nov. 22.

The Lions have Riley Reiff, their first-round pick from a year ago, set to handle a starting job on the line. The Lions selected Backus out of Michigan and now perhaps they will look for another local product to replace him. Detroit could have its eye on Central Michigan left tackle Eric Fisher. The Lions have the No. 5 pick in the first round.

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Brad Biggs covers the Bears for the Chicago Tribune

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