Report: Several teams looking at Cliff Avril

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PFT’s top-ranked defensive free agent isn’t lacking for attention early in the negotiating period.

Anwar Richardson of MLive.com reported Saturday that “at least four teams” have shown “interest” in Lions defensive end Cliff Avril thus far. According to Richardson, it is not known whether the Lions are in that mix.

Avril, who turns 27 in April, has notched 39.5 sacks in five NFL seasons. He has recorded at least 8.5 sacks in each of the last three campaigns. He is the No. 2-ranked player on PFT’s Free Agent Hot 100, which includes five other Lions.

Avril has played in a 4-3 scheme throughout his NFL career, but 3-4 teams are also intrigued by him, as PFT’s Mike Florio reported earlier this week.

29 responses to “Report: Several teams looking at Cliff Avril

  1. this guy is an average pass rusher, but not a game changer; he benefits off double teams of Sue and Fairley..he’s not good against the run and without Sue and Fairley on the line, he would be a bum!

    if he was such a good pass rusher, the lions would have signed him to a long-term deal, but he dreams of a mario williams contract which he isn’t worth and hopes there is 1 “Sucker” Team that will wayyyy overpay for him.

  2. Unless he plays in a wide 9 system with a top notch DT drawing double teams next to him on every play I see another Ray Edwards. Avril’s success has has been a result of playing next to Suh.

  3. A 3-4 is not a stretch for Cliff. He started 12 games as a strong side LB while at Purdue before he switched to DE. With that said he is a pure pass rusher and may have challenges adapting to LB at the NFL level. But there is obviously differences in playing SS LB in a 4-3 vs 3-4. Would be a D.Ware type player. Good Luck to Cliff, Always loved watching this guy in Honolulu Blue on Sundays.

  4. It would be great if the Lions get a defensive end that out produces Avril’s past, present and future stats at a fraction of the cost, while he goes on to be an expensive, cap killing FA bust somewhere else. The Lions need justification, not FA remorse.

  5. Hopefully Lions aren’t on that list. He’s a numbers guy with very little actual impact. Bad against the run. Took advantage of playing on a great DLine.

  6. Lions fans whining that an OLB with 11 sacks is not a run stopper. Go figure! Lions have about 1/3 of their sal cap tied up in 3-4 DL who can’t stop the run – but they think it’s the pass rushing linebacker’s fault. Avril is a top FA because a guy who can pressure the passer is one of the most valuable defensive commodities in today’s NFL.

  7. I’m afraid some of these posts are right about Avril. I’m a Lions fan so I watch the games. It be nice to keep him, but he’s drinking koolaid.

    You got Jay Cutler and Aaron Rodgers in their division who just give sacks to any D-Line. It makes numbers like Avril’s look pretty, and these previous posts are right on. He’s not a game changer and benefits off double teams from Sue. We would much rather pay for a good safety.

  8. The only reason he seems so good is because he gets 1-on-1 coverage while Suh is double teamed. He gets lucky swats at the ball and could be replaced by anyone. I was shocked to see him rated so high here, he will be an overpaid bust

  9. PFT either hates the raiders or hates Carson Palmer, This is the 4th time this week that they’ve shown a defender sacking Palmer

  10. He’s the next Ray Edwards. Product of the fact that he has one of the premier pass rushers to draw double teams (Suh) or to hurry the QB to Avrils side. This was the same case with Jared Allen and Ray Edwards in Minnesota

  11. So what does that say about the Loins (yes, I spelled that correctly) that they can’t win even with all that “talent”?

  12. I used to say that when you’re at the edge of the cliff, it’s good to have Cliff on the edge. Too bad Avril can’t bring Suh and Fairley with him. He can’t defend the run and I think the team that signs him will be disappointed in the production they’ll receive for their money. Caveat emptor.

  13. wryly1 says:Mar 9, 2013 11:05 AM

    Lions fans whining that an OLB with 11 sacks is not a run stopper. Go figure! Lions have about 1/3 of their sal cap tied up in 3-4 DL who can’t stop the run – but they think it’s the pass rushing linebacker’s fault. Avril is a top FA because a guy who can pressure the passer is one of the most valuable defensive commodities in today’s NFL.
    __________________

    Can you read or did you dictate your comment to someone? Avril played DE in a wide 9 scheme for the Lions. He was a pass rusher only and does poorly against the run. He benefited greatly by playing on the same line as Fairley and Suh who was double-teamed on most plays.

  14. After losing Vandy and likely to lose Avril, just who are the Lions planning to lean on at DE? Ronnell Lewis? Willie Young? Some ’13 rooks?

  15. Ialwayswantedtobeabanker; if the Lions don’t bring back KVB at a vet minimum, I could see them using LoJack (presuming they retain him) with a rookie on the other side from our number 5 pick. If KVB comes back he is probably day 1 starter opposite LoJack, leaving the Lions more options in the draft IMO. Very important we keep W.Young to mix things up in the rotation with R.Lewis. Maybe one of those two backups takes the majority of snaps from KVB at some point in the season, as he is old and tends to wear down.

  16. wryly1 says: Mar 9, 2013 11:05 AM

    Lions fans whining that an OLB with 11 sacks is not a run stopper. Go figure! Lions have about 1/3 of their salary cap tied up in 3-4 DL who can’t stop the run – but they think it’s the pass rushing linebacker’s fault. Avril is a top FA because a guy who can pressure the passer is one of the most valuable defensive commodities in today’s NFL.

    ———————————————————-

    I find it quite comical when people open there mouth about something like they’re very knowledgeable in that area; then prove that they’re clueless and don’t know jack about the situation. The Lions do not run the 3-4. The Lions run the 4-3 and as a wide alignment referred to as the Wide-9. Cliff Avril is the DE in the Wide-9 not a Rush LB, as you’ve illustrated. They also employ the 3-3-5 set which is a Nickle set that consist of 3 down lineman, 3 linebackers and 5 in the secondary.

  17. FREE AGENTS..beware of heading to Cleveland

    Remember LeCharles Bentley and Gary Baxter…the only thing that happens to free agents in Cleveland is their knees get blown out and they get major staph infections.

    Remember BEREA= Staph infection city.

  18. Very overrated, but actually might excel in a 3-4 (the jets for example) as a straight up pass rusher. But the lions can save the money and go through the draft and free agency.

  19. From Pro Football Focus …

    Overvalued
    1. Cliff Avril, Defensive End

    Avril’s play this season should be a case study on the importance of sacks. Avril had 10 sacks. That’s more than Brian Robison, Michael Bennett, and Derrick Morgan. Avril’s Pass Rushing Productivity, on the other hand, was a mediocre 7.4, the 29th-best mark among 4-3 ends. If he was average in run defense he would have had some good value given his 708 snaps. He was well below average, however, with the fourth-worst run defense grade and the fourth-worst Run Stop Percentage among 4-3 ends. Avril still has value as a spot pass rusher, but he has had only one season with a positive run defense grade in his career (2009).

    Cap Hit: $10.6m
    Performance Based Value: $947k
    Value Differential: -$9.7m

    Caveat emptor!!!!!!!

  20. Don’t let the door hit you in the a$$ on the way out. He’s worth around 7.5-8 million a year and some team will pay him 10+. I’m glad it’s not going to be the Lions.

  21. I agree with Suh being a great help to Avril’s numbers, but think too about teams who have a fairly good line now that could add Avril to the mix.

    Lions should keep him if they can.

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