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Cliff Avril says he hopes to remain a Lion

San Francisco 49ers v Detroit Lions Getty Images

Although Lions defensive end Cliff Avril has indicated that he won’t be happy with the franchise tag, he wants to make it clear that he is happy with the Lions, and hopes to stay a happy Lion for years to come.

In an interview with Anwar Richardson of MLive.com, Avril carefully made clear that he doesn’t want to alienate Detroit fans and does want to remain a Detroit player.

“I definitely want to be a part of it,” Avril said. “I’ve been a part of the worst possible season, being 0-16, and to win 10 games this past season and be a part of that, you see where the team is headed. To keep moving up and be part of why the team is successful is definitely a major thing to me.”

Avril knows that some Lions fans have labeled him selfish, but he said he hopes fans will see things from his perspective.

“I want to be with Detroit,” Avril said. “I want to be a part of the reason why we’re winning. Also, people have to understand it is a business. When you’re not producing, they definitely let you go. When you’re producing, you should be compensated. That’s what a lot of people fail to realize. As far as being a football player, being with the city of Detroit and on the team, I definitely want to be here. We just have to come to some type of agreement eventually.”

But if they don’t come to an agreement soon, the franchise tag may come first.

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19 Responses to “Cliff Avril says he hopes to remain a Lion”
  1. lolb23 says: Feb 21, 2012 3:47 PM

    Keeping your best players is the fastest way to the Super Bowl.

  2. noeffinway says: Feb 21, 2012 3:57 PM

    Avril is greedy! The only reason he wants to stay with the Lions is to get a Super Bowl ring next year!!!! GO LIONS!

  3. seatown12 says: Feb 21, 2012 3:59 PM

    Avril is about as lucky as a DE gets in this league. He’ll seldom see a double again in his career on that D line. I’d sign a fair deal and be very happy about it.

  4. 808raiderinparadise says: Feb 21, 2012 4:01 PM

    They gotta pay megatron, megamillions and find some other Defensive peices at LB and secondary.

    this guy had 5 sacks, 5.5 sacks, then 8.5 sacks and 11 sacks this year in a contract year, shocking right?

    about 32 sacks in 4 seasons, he has value, but he shouldn’t be a huge priority imo.

  5. FinFan68 says: Feb 21, 2012 4:07 PM

    No. It is clear that he wants the money. He is just basically saying that he hopes the Lions will pay him the most without using the tag. If he truly wanted to be there he would never have said he would hold out of camp if tagged.

  6. alldonesmith says: Feb 21, 2012 4:11 PM

    [i]”When you’re producing, you should be compensated. That’s what a lot of people fail to realize.”[/i]

    Actually Cliff, I don’t think anyone fails to realize that. But thanks for insulting your customers’ intelligence. Smart move. What YOU and every other sports star, franchise owner and celebrity fail to realize is that you are EXTREMELY overpaid compared to what you contribute to society. And the level of “compensation” you SHOULD be receiving is a lot lower than what almost all of you are getting.

    Maybe if you got paid to do real work instead of playing a game for a living, you’d understand how much more the fans who pay your salary need the money than you do. And why we’re getting so tired of athletes whining about how they’re underpaid. Instead of alienating people, why don’t you just try saying “I want to hit free agency so the market can determine my value”? No one can argue with that. And you wouldn’t come off like an out-of-touch a-hole, either.

  7. mark8240 says: Feb 21, 2012 4:16 PM

    Avril had 11 sacks last year. The back ups Jackson and Young had a total of 7.5 sacks. This guy might be good but hes not worth the money that comes with the franchise tag. Avril got the numbers he got more becuase of the system he was in and the players around him. Maybe not all but most of Avril’s production can be replaced for far less money than a tag. Let him go. We only have a small amount of cash to work with and we have other players who are more important to the team and will be much hard to replace.

  8. lunarpie says: Feb 21, 2012 4:16 PM

    They all say that until another team flashes the cash…

  9. jenniferxxx says: Feb 21, 2012 4:23 PM

    What he really said was that he hopes the Lions are the team that offers him the most money …

  10. megatronlegacy says: Feb 21, 2012 4:27 PM

    He’s a pretty good pass rusher and mediocre against the run. He makes the most sense to franchise I guess, but I wouldn’t be distraught if he left.

    I personally have liked what I’ve seen out of Willie Young when he has played, only player who touched Brees in that debacle.

    Also, I enjoy seeing these early comments with 1 thumbs up so it’s clear who has been liking their own posts.

  11. bodester says: Feb 21, 2012 4:56 PM

    As a Lions fan Cliff Avril needs to stop talking to the press Every Single Day about his contract situation. Enough. Let it play out.

  12. nflfollower says: Feb 21, 2012 5:28 PM

    808raiderinparadise says:

    “this guy had 5 sacks, 5.5 sacks, then 8.5 sacks and 11 sacks this year in a contract year, shocking right?”

    If he hits the market as a free agent, a lot of teams would see that as a young guy who has steadily improved in his first 4 seasons and who is ready to peak. Perfect for big free agent bucks. The fact that he had less sacks in his first two seasons, but has steadily improved, is not surprising and is not necessarily indicative of anything other than a player adjusting to the next level.

  13. camjon32 says: Feb 21, 2012 5:34 PM

    After reading the comments left by the folks on this article, I feel a lot better. I really thought I was in the minority in feeling the Lions may be better off without the burden of paying Avril (Good, but not great) superstar money. They have superstars that they actually MUST retain i.e. Calvin Johnson…

    Let him go and be overpaid somewhere else…looking at his stats for the past four years, he doesn’t deserve more than 4 yrs/$32 with maybe $10 guaranteed…and I’m being very generous.

    Extend Calvin, sign Tulloch and Wright long term…that’s a start….

  14. mjkelly77 says: Feb 21, 2012 5:49 PM

    Avril probably does want to remain a Lion. He recognizes that the franchise is in a good place right now and may even soon be in a Super Bowl. But in any negotiation there are tradeoffs. Maybe he’ll take less money for more that is guaranteed. Only he knows what’s in his heart and what he requires in order to sign a contract. Unfortunately for Cliff, Calvin is number 1 and I believe Tulloch is number 2 as far as mandatory signings. If Cliff is openminded, I’m sure they’ll get a deal done. To play with a defensive line like Detroit’s, Avril’s stats are much better than they’d otherwise be and I think he understands that as well. I trust Lewand, Mayhew and Schwartz to do the right thing.

  15. lionsplayoffs says: Feb 21, 2012 6:27 PM

    Nobody is selfish in wanting a big payday. He deserves one. It would just be nice to see him stay at a fair price. He is the benefactor of a strong DL, but he’s still a big reason it’s strong. I hope they get a long-term deal done in less than a year.

  16. majbobby says: Feb 21, 2012 7:25 PM

    Hey Cliff bring your talent to B-Lo. Fans would love to cheer you.

  17. philtration says: Feb 21, 2012 8:47 PM

    I could have sworn that the Lions fans on this site were claiming that the Bears were being cheap with Matt Forte after they offered him a lot of money and he held out for more.

    “Pay the man!” you cried.

  18. detroitcityryda says: Feb 21, 2012 8:47 PM

    Trade him get a 1st rounder and re sign tulloch we can replace Avril , but tulloch is the guy that had the best year we need him .

  19. darthhitman77 says: Feb 22, 2012 10:26 AM

    philtration says: Feb 21, 2012 8:47 PM

    I could have sworn that the Lions fans on this site were claiming that the Bears were being cheap with Matt Forte after they offered him a lot of money and he held out for more.

    “Pay the man!” you cried.

    As a Lions fan I can still see how much more important is to the Bears’ offense than Avril is to Detroit’s defense. Forte IS worth top 5 money, Avril is NOT. Avril deserves a pay increase, but NFL fans of all 32 teams would know who Julius Peppers is without the internet, NFL Network etc. How about Cliff Avril? The difference between Avril and Peppers is Peppers gets the doubles while Avril benefits from not. I love Avril and hope he and the club can meet in the middle somewhere, but if he’s unwilling to bend then the team should be more than willing to let him walk. LoJack and Willie can handle it

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