This past offseason, the Detroit Lions saw one of the best defensive players in the game leave the team that drafted him for a huge pay day from the Miami Dolphins. If the Lions aren’t careful, they could be facing a very similar situation in 2o16.
The Ndamukong Suh saga was long and dragged out and hung over the heads of fans and the franchise for months. If the Lions have learned anything, they won’t let the same thing happen with star linebacker DeAndre Levy.
Not only will resigning Levy immediately remove a potential dark cloud that would hang over the franchise, but it’s also much more fiscally responsible. Handling this issue now, before the Tampa Bay Buccaneers young star linebacker Lavonte David gets his big payday and sets the market for outside linebackers higher, would be beneficial for the Lions.
Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press spoke with a former NFL agent who detailed why signing Levy now could pay huge dividends in the long run for Detroit.
“I’d try to get that thing done before David’s deal hits the market,” said Joel Corry, a former agent who now covers the business side of football for CBS Sports. “Once you got David in the marketplace — and I’m assuming that’s going to be a strong deal — that will be a focal point of discussions, or that’s going to be an important data point, at least from the agent’s mind and the player’s mind.”
The Lions have a handful of other young players on the defensive side of the ball, such as Ziggy Ansah and Darius Slay, who will certainly demand higher paydays than Levy because of the position they play. Signing Levy to an extension in the coming weeks, presumably for around 6-7 million, would be huge for the Lions in terms of keeping their young core together for years to come.
After the way they dealt with the Suh situation, it is impossible to know just how the Levy situation will play out. But for the sake of the franchise and the fans, let’s hope the Lions do the logical thing and get Levy signed as soon as possible.