I will be doing a series of articles that will be taking a methodical team by team approach to next year’s possible free agents. I will be starting with the team that has the least amount of salary cap space and ending with the team with the most. I will try to give a brief description of as many of the possible free agents as I can. I will also be looking for players that might be salary cap cuts in order for their teams to make room to sign some of these possible free agents. Any information anyone else can contribute on these players would be very much appreciated.
The Detroit Lions projected to be $35,914,806 UNDER the cap (all salary info via Over The Cap) for 2017 and with 38 players under contract.
(EastBayNinerFan has the combined total of the salary cap surplus carry over from 2016 and the cap space for 2017 as $40,512,492).
Dollar figures listed are player’s 2016 cap hits.
WR Anquan Boldin - $2,737,500
Anquan Boldin is 36 years old and was originally drafted by the Cardinals in the second round of the 2003 draft. Boldin has 58 receptions for 494 yards and seven touchdowns this season. Thanks for the memories, Boldin.
RT Riley Reiff - $8,070,000
Reilly Reiff is 28 years old and was drafted by the Lions in the first round of the 2012 draft. Reiff is on his fifth year option. His PFF grade seems a little low for an $8 million dollar right tackle, so it will be interesting to see what the Lions offer him.
43DT Stefan Charles - $1,750,000
Stefan Charles is 28 years old and was originally picked up by the Titans as an undrafted free agent in 2013. The Lions signed Charles in March of this year. He has only 25 tackles in the last two seasons.
43DT Tyrunn Walker - $1,337,500
Tyrunn Walker is 26 years old and was originally picked up by the Saints as an undrafted free agent in 2012. Walker signed with the Lions in March of 2015. Walker has 23 tackles this season which is the most of his career.
S Rafael Bush - $1,265,625
Rafael Bush in 29 years old and was originally picked up by the Falcons as an undrafted free agent in 2010. Bush was signed by the Lions in March of this year. Bush has 52 tackles, three passes defended, one sack and two interceptions this season. He had 56 tackles in 2014 before having an injury filled season in 2015. PFF has him graded as slightly above Bethea and Reid.
QB Dan Orlovsky - $680,000
Dan Orlovsky is 33 years old and was originally drafted by the Lions in the fifth round of the 2005 draft and he returned to the Lions in April of 2014. Orlovsky is basically a professional backup that has not taken a lot of snaps over his 11+ year career.
ILB Jon Bostic - $942,381
Jon Bostic is 25 years old and was originally drafted by the Bears in the second round of the 2013 draft. The Patriots traded Bostic to the Lions in May of this year for a conditional seventh round pick. Bostic was placed on injured reserve in September with a foot injury. Bostic had a decent year for the Bears in 2014 with 84 tackles and three passes defended.
43OLB Josh Bynes - $529,412
Josh Bynes is 27 years old and was originally picked up by the Ravens as an undrafted free agent in 2011. The Lions signed Bynes off of the Ravens practice squad in 2014. He was inured/released in September and re-signed to the active roster in late October. He has two tackles this season. I am not sure what we would do with him?
TE Matthew Mulligan - $317,647
Matthew Mulligan is 31 years old and was originally picked up by the Dolphins as an undrafted free agent in 2008. Mulligan has been tossed around the league like a bowl of salad. He has 17 reception in his career.
TE Timothy Wright - $771,250
Timothy Wright is 26 years old and was originally picked up by the Bucs as an undrafted free agent in 2013. The Bucs traded Wright to the Lions in August of 2015 for a placekicker. Wright had nine reception in 2015 but tore his ACL in May of this year.
RG Larry Warford - $1,845,250
Larry Warford is 25 years old and was drafted by the Lions in the third round of the 2013 draft. Warford has started 13 games this season. PFF has him rated as the 27th best guard in the NFL.
RB Joique Bell - $141,176
Joique Bell is 30 years old and was originally picked up by the Bills as an undrafted free agent in 2010. Bell was signed by the Lions in December of 2011. The Lions released him in February of this year, he was pick up by the Bears in September and released in October and re-signed by the Lions earlier this month. Bell has three carries for six yards this season.
TE Clay Harbor - $581,177
Clay Harbor is 29 years old and was originally drafted by the Eagles in the fourth round of the 2010 draft. Harbor was signed in October after being released by the Patriots. Clay has three receptions this year for 19 yards.
WR Andre Roberts - $600,000
Andre Roberts is 28 years old and was originally drafted by the Cardinals in the third round of the 2010 draft. Roberts was released by Washington in May and signed by the Lions in June of this year. Roberts has 13 receptions for 174 yards this season. He had pretty good numbers with the Cardinals between 2010 and 2013 so I don’t know what happened to him. He is only 28 so I would not think it was age.
CB Asa Jackson - $141,176
Asa Jackson is 27 years old and was originally drafted by the Ravens in the fifth round of the 2012 draft. The Lions signed Jackson off of the Ravens practice squad earlier this month. Asa has seven tackles this season.
43DE Corey Lemonier - $120,882
Corey Lemonier is 25 years old and was originallt drafted by the 49ers in the third round of the 2013 draft. Lemonier was claimed off of waivers (Browns) earlier this month. Lemons has nine tackles, two sacks, and one forced fumble this season. At least the guy can set an edge.
43DE Devin Taylor - $750,146
Devin Taylor is 27 years old and was drafted by the Lions in the fourth round of the 2013 draft. Taylor has 27 tackles, 4.5 sacks, one pass defended and one forced fumble this season. Taylor has 36 inch arms, is 6’7” and weighs 266 pound and he is fairly quick. Could this guy convert to a 34OLB?
43DE Armonty Bryant - $413,434
Armonty Bryant is 26 years old and was originally drafted by the Browns in the seventh round of the 2013 draft. Bryant was claimed off of waiver from the Brown in October. He has five tackles, three sacks, and one forced fumble this season.