The Lions will release veteran wide receiver Nate Burleson today (Thursday). The move will save $5.5 million in salary cap space.
Burleson, 32, sent a Tweet at 2:20 p.m. that makes it sound like his time in Detroit is over.
“The last 4 years in Michigan been incredible! MY TEAM, FANS & the CITY will missed more than you know! Thank You! Love Detroit!’’ — his Tweet said.
Burleson said three weeks ago in an appearance at Walmart in Sterling Heights, that he knows he would have to re-do his contract for less money to stay in Detroit. At that point he seemed confident it would happen.
Burleson missed seven games in the 2013 season after breaking his left forearm in a freak car accident. He finished with 39 catches for 461 yards and one touchdown.
In 11 NFL seasons he had 457 catches for 5,630 yards and 39 touchdowns.
While not officially a captain for the Lions, Burleson was a strong leader among the wide receivers group and the offense.
He became a huge fan of the city of Detroit.
On Jan. 20 at an appearance at a Walmart in Sterling Heights, Burleson said he wasn’t ready to retire.
“I don’t know, I only played half a year and put up 40 catches, I figure a full season Nate Burleson stays healthy I can be productive and give you about 80 catches and I’m not going to retire from getting 80 catches,’’ Burleson said that day. “We’ll see, maybe one or two years. It all depends on what we bring back to the city. The sooner we get a Super Bowl in Detroit, the sooner I can consider retirement.’’
If Burleson doesn't sign with another team — his age works against him — look for him to start a broadcasting career. He's done offseason work on the NFL Network.