Lions' Cliff Avril signs tender, ends hold-out
It was the most amiable of hold-outs. Lions defensive end Cliff Avril missed the first week of training camp.
Everyone knew he would eventually sign the $10.6 million tender and report to camp.
That happened on Sunday morning according to an announcement from the Lions.
General manager Martin Mayhew said he expected Avril to report he just didn’t know when.
Avril, a veteran, is fully expected to report in shape. The next practice is tonight at Ford Field for the inaugural Coach’s Kickoff. Tickets are available at the gate.
Avril and the team had been unable to agree to a long-term deal before the July 16 deadline. He made it clear that he would hold out from camp, in part to spare himself from injury.
It was apparently a friendly negotiation process even though a deal was not reached. Mayhew had nothing but good things to say about Avril who is betting he’ll have another season like last year when he led the team with 11 sacks. He also had six forced fumbles, four pass defenses, an interception and a touchdown.
By signing on Sunday, Avril will get in enough practices so he should be able to play in the opening preseason game on Friday at Ford Field against the Cleveland Browns.
With his absence in camp, Lawrence Jackson and Willie Young had been getting more snaps.
While young at age 26, Avril is a team leader. He’ll be welcomed back into the locker room.
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