It seems as though Lions general manager Bob Quinn is staying true to his theory on the importance of special teams, as 29-year-old safety Don Carey has been signed to a one-year contract extension.
The Lions have signed S Don Carey to a 1-year, $1.35M extension through 2017, per league source.
— Field Yates (@FieldYates) November 16, 2016
The deal comes with a $375,000 signing bonus. Carey, who is primarily used in special teams situations, has also seen some time as a nickel corner this year. He leads the team with seven special teams tackles this season, where he generally plays as a gunner on punts.
Carey and Johnson Bademosi are a big reason why punter Sam Martin leads the NFL with a 45.4 yard net average on punts, as they have combined to become one of the best punt coverage units in the league.
Carey has also had a great impact on the community, as he is the team’s nominee for the 2016 Walter Payton Man of the Year award for his work with schools in the area.
Selected by the Cleveland Browns in the sixth round of the 2009 NFL Draft, Carey never saw the field with the Browns as he was waived during his first training camp with the team as a result of a shoulder injury. He was claimed off waivers by the Jacksonville Jaguars, but ultimately spent his rookie season on injured reserve. He played 15 games with the team in the 2010 season, and signed with the Lions for the 2011 season. Detroit waived him in 2012, but re-signed him later in the year.
This season is the final year of a three-year deal that he signed with Detroit in 2014. In his six NFL seasons, he has racked up a total of 173 tackles, as well as three interceptions, although he hasn’t recorded an interception since the 2012 season.