Detroit Lions defensive end Cliff Avril has been looking for some career stability with a contract. A deal was almost signed but never materialized and he operated under the franchise tag, and was a candidate to receive the tag again this year but the Lions decided to pass. Had they tagged him, he would’ve cost $12.7 million against the cap.
But since finding out that the Lions wouldn’t use the tag on him, Avril says he hasn’t heard from them.
“[This week will] give me a good idea of what’s going on, if I’ll be here or if I’ll be gone,” Avril said, in an interview with Dave Birkett of the Detroit Press. “This week will definitely gauge that, I guess.”
He is considered one of the premier players at that position and surely will field interest from teams when free agency starts March 12th. And despite running into Lions coach Jim Schwartz over the weekend, he says the two didn’t talk.
“Honestly, we haven’t really talked that much,” Avril said.
And an answer to a question taken out of context might be the reason he’s been at a stand still in contract negotiations.
“I didn’t say I wanted Mario Williams money, I’m like, ‘Who wouldn’t want his money?’ ” Avril said. “The guy asked me, ‘Mario made this amount of money, is that something [you'd want]?’ I’m like, ‘Shoot, wouldn’t you want it? Who wouldn’t want that deal?’ But people take it further than that.”