2012 Detroit Lions Free Agents

(Ed. note: Bumped to the front page.)

The Lions have a lot of free agents to sign for the 2012 season, and they will be hard pressed to sign them all. Some will obviously be let go, while others are critical to re-sign. Here is a list of the free agents from the Lions for 2012.

Cliff Avril
Jeff Backus OT UFA
Bobby Carpenter LB UFA
Erik Coleman S UFA
Rashied Davis WR UFA
Leonard Davis OT UFA
Isaiah Ekejiuba LB UFA
Andre Fluellen DT UFA
Ben Graham P UFA
Chris Harris S UFA
Jerome Harrison RB UFA
Shaun Hill QB UFA
Sammie Hill DT RFA
Corey Hilliard OT RFA
DeAndre Levy LB RFA
Stefan Logan WR UFA
Brandon McDonald CB UFA
Maurice Morris RB UFA
Don Muhlbach C UFA
Ashlee Palmer LB RFA
Kevin Smith RB UFA
Drew Stanton QB UFA
Maurice Stovall WR UFA
Donald Thomas OG UFA
Stephen Tulloch LB UFA
Derrick Williams WR RFA
Eric Wright CB UFA

There are some names on the list that are no-brainers. Cliff Avril, Don Muhlbach, Kevin Smith, Stephen Tulloch, and Eric Wright are all players that have significant value to the Lions and should be signed to a new contract. Muhlbach and Kevin Smith will be relatively cheap contracts, while Avril, Tulloch, and Wright could break the bank. Of these players, Avril is the most expendable. The Lions should try to reach a deal with him, but there just may not be enough money under the cap to keep him.

A couple of the names are restricted free agents that are almost certain to get a tender offer. Sammie Hill and DeAndre Levy are pretty much locks to get tendered, while Corey Hilliard and Ashlee Palmer are only slightly less sure. Both Hilliard and Palmer are likely to be on the camp roster even if they are eventually cut.

There are a lot of players on this list that are not as clear. For example, Jeff Backus is beginning to pile up some injuries. The Lions should sign him, but not for the $6.75 million he was making in 2011. If the Lions can get him for $2-3 million then great. Once you get higher than that it may be better to sign somebody else.

Rashied Davis and Bobby Carpenter contributed well when they had the opportunity and I expect to see them return next season.

Stefan Logan will probably be back, but he could be a roster casualty if the Lions decide that somebody else on the roster can return as well as Logan does while also playing other important roles on the team.

It is hard to tell what might happen with Leonard Davis. I expected him to play more, but his arrival made Stephen Peterman start playing well, and that might be his greatest value. If Davis does stay then I expect the Lions to give him more playing time next season.

Both of the backup quarterbacks will be free agents. Shaun Hill says he wants to return. I think that Drew Stanton will be likely to find greener pastures elsewhere.

Ben Graham will probably give way to Ryan Donahue for next season.

Fluellen and Ekejiuba have value to the team and it would not surprise me to see them back. It also would not surprise me to see them leave.

I am not sure what the coaches think of Chris Harris. He did not play very well when asked to step in. He looks slow out there.

Everybody else is likely to be gone for next season.

This is a FanPost and does not necessarily reflect the views of Pride Of Detroit or its writers.