LOOK: Detroit Lions DE Ezekiel Ansah’s cap number released

NFL: Chicago Bears at Detroit Lions
Dec 11, 2016; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Lions defensive end Ezekiel Ansah (94) walks off the field before the game against the Chicago Bears at Ford Field. Lions win 20-17. Mandatory Credit: Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports

Unless defensive end Ezekiel Ansah and the Detroit Lions are able to agree upon a contract extension, Ansah will play the 2018 season under the non-exclusive franchise tag. What does that mean? Basically, it means he'll be playing in Detroit next season unless another team wants to give up two first-round picks to Detroit for compensation. Detroit would also have the ability to match any offer given to him.


The NFL's memo to each team on Monday informed them what the franchise tag would cost teams at each position, and most importantly to the Lions, the tag price a defensive end is $17.143 million.

Ansah finished last season with 44 tackles and 12 sacks while sorting through a bevy of injuries to his back and knee. His 12 sacks were good enough to tie him for the eighth most in the league, although nine of those sacks came in three games.

“We talked to Ziggy (before the NFL combine), had a good conversation with Ziggy about what the future entails,” Lions general manager Bob Quinn told the Detroit Free Press. “All of those conversations between me and the player is going to be private. We’re not going to get into talking about it with you guys. But we did talk to him, told him what our plan was and he understands where we’re coming from. We understand where he’s coming from and we’re looking forward to having him on the team.”

Ansah made $12.734 million last season, which was the last year on his rookie deal.

Players who receive the franchise tag must be offered a one year contract, which is to be no less than the average of the top five cap hits for the past five seasons, or 120% of the player's salary from the last season, whichever number is greater. In Ansah's case, the average of the past five seasons was higher, which is how the $17+ million salary was determined.