Friday, February 15, 2013
Avril's chances of coming back
By Tim Kavanagh
If they aren't able to re-sign any of their impending free agents this offseason, the Detroit Lions will have six new starters on the defensive side of the ball. One of the areas hit particularly hard by the scheduling of their recent contracts is DE: they've already released Kyle Vanden Bosch this offseason, while Cliff Avril, Lawrence Jackson and Willie Young are all hitting free agency (Young is an RFA).
So there is an added dynamic to the club's negotiations with Avril, their franchise tag recipient in 2012, who reportedly turned down a three-year, $30 million pact last offseason, thinking he'd get something better in free agency in 2013. He's made no secret of the fact that he likes playing in Detroit, but that doesn't necessarily mean that he's willing to offer them a discount on his next pact.
"I don't know. It depends on the situation, honestly," Avril explained during an appearance on "Pro Football Talk" on the NBC Sports Network, via MLive.com. "It depends on why I would be taking less money, first off. I don't know, but we just have to get the numbers going and we'll see. I really don't know if I would take less right now."
The DE also commented that he'd like to find a place to call home for "the next four to five years," and asked to peg the chances that this would be Detroit, he responded, "I guess it's 50-50. I don't know right now."
If Avril and the Lions are unable to work something out, he'll join the other UFAs on the market as of March 12. Given the situation at DE in Detroit, it would appear he has significant leverage.