Time is winding down for the Lions and other NFL teams to re-sign their own guys.
The Lions still have exclusive rights to negotiate with Cliff Avril, Chris Houston and the others who will become unrestricted free agents until 12:01 a.m. Saturday.
It’s different in the NFL this year, more like the NBA when it comes to free agency.
Starting at 12:01 a.m. on Saturday teams can start talking to agents of unrestricted free agents from any team. They can’t talk to the players until 4 p.m. on Tuesday (March 12) when they can begin signing them.
That means the window is starting to close for the Lions on their own guys before letting them hit the open market.
General manager Martin Mayhew told reporters at the Combine that they had targeted nine of their own players to re-sign. Offensive tackle Corey Hilliard was signed last week which leaves eight more.
Mayhew didn’t name the nine he had targeted but his list possibly included Avril, Houston, Louis Delmas, Corey Williams, Lawrence Jackson, Justin Durant and Sammie Hill. Kassim Osgood is a possibility too.