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Two-year, $15 million deal shows Cliff Avril bet on himself and lost

Cliff Avril AP

The Lions reportedly offered Cliff Avril a three-year, $30 million contract last year. Avril declined, instead signing the franchise tender, playing last season for $10.5 million, and then testing free agency again this year.

In other words, he bet on himself. And he lost.

According to ESPN, Avril has agreed to a two-year, $15 million deal with the Seahawks. That means Avril will end up making a total of $25.5 million for the 2012, 2013 and 2014 seasons — after turning down the Lions’ offer to pay him a total of $30 million for the 2012, 2013 and 2014 seasons.

Players often like to bet on themselves by refusing long-term deals from their original teams and testing unrestricted free agency. In Avril’s case, that turned out to be a miscalculation.

The good news for Avril is that he’ll get to test free agency again in two years, when he’s only 28. But if the Seahawks offer him an extension after one year, he should strongly consider it.

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97 Responses to “Two-year, $15 million deal shows Cliff Avril bet on himself and lost”
  1. fitzmagic1212 says: Mar 13, 2013 8:56 PM

    oh my god we gave mario 100 mill….couldve had avril ellerbe wheeler kruger and more wow

  2. seahawksteven777 says: Mar 13, 2013 8:56 PM

    Bad for Avril, good for Seattle.

  3. harrin42 says: Mar 13, 2013 8:58 PM

    Maybe money wasn’t the issue this time around. Because it would just be a crazy notion if he wanted to go play on a team that is a sure super bowl contender. And really, $15 million is still a lot of dough.

  4. errybodybabydaddy says: Mar 13, 2013 8:58 PM

    Silly Cliff

  5. tjh9985 says: Mar 13, 2013 8:58 PM

    Seattle got a great deal.

  6. sfn155 says: Mar 13, 2013 8:58 PM

    Probably would’ve been cut after 2 years in the 3 year contract.

  7. stoutfiles says: Mar 13, 2013 8:58 PM

    He left an average team in a crappy city for a great team in a nice city. I say he won on that deal.

  8. isphet71 says: Mar 13, 2013 8:59 PM

    Avril’s stats during the 2012 season against NFC west teams:

    STL – 1 tackle, 1 assist, 1 sack.
    49ers- 0 tackles, 0 assists, 0 sacks.
    Seattle – 1 tackle, 0 assists, 0 sacks.
    Arizona – 1 tackle, 0 assists, 0 sacks.

    Have fun in the NFC west. That was with a pretty good interior line and single coverage.

  9. mungman69 says: Mar 13, 2013 8:59 PM

    Seahawks look very strong.

  10. veence69 says: Mar 13, 2013 8:59 PM

    So the Seahawks window is open. They’ve got about 3 seasons before they’re going to be in salary cap hell.

    Go get ‘em, Seahawks. This is your time.

  11. rca26 says: Mar 13, 2013 8:59 PM

    Sort of, except now he’s playing for Seattle instead of Detroit.

  12. cullimon says: Mar 13, 2013 8:59 PM

    Hahaha this is the best news of the day

  13. obiwanbonogi says: Mar 13, 2013 9:00 PM

    He gets to leave Detroit. I call it a push.

  14. lyfestiles206 says: Mar 13, 2013 9:00 PM

    Great signing. He will easily get double digit sacks with playing half his games at the Clink and being motivated for another contract. Go Hawks!

  15. pencilmonkeymagic says: Mar 13, 2013 9:00 PM

    Smart deal by John Schneider. Again.

  16. blacknole08 says: Mar 13, 2013 9:00 PM

    Of course he overvalued himself. He is a one trick pony who benifited from a great DL in Detroit.

    Ray Edwards 2.0

  17. flavordave says: Mar 13, 2013 9:01 PM

    15 million, with all due respect here, is not a loss. The loss occurs when he plays Chip Kelly and the Eagles intricate offense.

  18. welandedonthemoon says: Mar 13, 2013 9:01 PM

    Clearly playing for a winner was important to Avril.

  19. detroitrollin22 says: Mar 13, 2013 9:01 PM

    LOL

  20. jameslongstaffe says: Mar 13, 2013 9:02 PM

    I would not call making 25 million dollars losing, just to play football. I can think of many people that have lost more than that in life.

  21. anonymouslyanonymouscommentor says: Mar 13, 2013 9:02 PM

    Or maybe he’s looking for a Superbowl?

  22. axespray says: Mar 13, 2013 9:02 PM

    Not sure about the guy – if you can’t produce more than 9 sacks playing next to Suh and Fairley – then … idk, you should be able to rack up more stats when the opposing QB can never step up in the pocket.

  23. skoobyfl says: Mar 13, 2013 9:03 PM

    A team that’ll probably make the playoffs isn’t anything but a gain this season, goodluck.

  24. chawk12thman says: Mar 13, 2013 9:03 PM

    Good Money anyway and on a very good team. He has to be happy. I know I am.

    Go Hawks!

  25. clipper325 says: Mar 13, 2013 9:03 PM

    Lotta that going around… See the Pats 3 year, 24 mil offer that Welker turned down last year.

  26. beastmode5150 says: Mar 13, 2013 9:04 PM

    Great value for a guy that gets 10 sacks and 6 FF’s a year. Another coup for Schneider and Carroll. Watch the Vegas odds change again, go hawks!

  27. ginop0981 says: Mar 13, 2013 9:06 PM

    I like Avril but people saying he wanted to play for a winner are just off base. At the time of the Lions offer we were coming off a playoff berth and all signs pointed up. He wanted more money didn’t get more money and no matter how you spin it about the seahawks being better it was about money. The Seahawks paid the most if the Panthers would’ve gave him that Mario Williams deal i’m sorry Lions and Seahakws fans he would be Panther.

  28. kazkal says: Mar 13, 2013 9:06 PM

    —-Of course he overvalued himself. He is a one trick pony who benifited from a great DL in Detroit. —

    Solid Dline in Detroit,Great is what Cinci has for a Dline.Just saying <3

  29. shotgunnoblitz says: Mar 13, 2013 9:06 PM

    Bet on himself and lost money maybe. But he is going from the lions to the seahawks. After the way the hawks finished up the season its not insane to say that he thought he had a chance to play in a superbowl with seahawks rather than in the toilet bowl with the lions.

  30. ripster65 says: Mar 13, 2013 9:07 PM

    HA! Good for him! I love the stories the last few years about how so-n-so thought he was the sh!t but now finds that he really wasn’t because no one wants him anymore or how guys hold out and wind up with less than they were offered or thought they could get elsewhere or take the $$$ to go from a contender to, say, Buffalo. I realize that the league isn’t perfect but it’s nice to see the “low guys on the totem pole” put in their place. You’ve got to be an extreme standout in your field to make your own demands and it seems that pretty much all these guys think they are standouts. Go figure…

  31. National Fanatic says: Mar 13, 2013 9:09 PM

    NOTE: There is NO state income taxe in Washington either, so hat will have him some serious scratch too…
    BONUS!

  32. cowartsh says: Mar 13, 2013 9:09 PM

    He’s sooooo overrated

  33. mjkelly77 says: Mar 13, 2013 9:09 PM

    The offer was for $30 million of which $20 million was guaranteed. Idiot.

  34. rgwhodey says: Mar 13, 2013 9:11 PM

    leaving a bad organization and joining a winner for 7.5 mil a year sounds like a win..

  35. mjkelly77 says: Mar 13, 2013 9:11 PM

    harrin42 says:Mar 13, 2013 8:58 PM

    Maybe money wasn’t the issue this time around. Because it would just be a crazy notion if he wanted to go play on a team that is a sure super bowl contender. And really, $15 million is still a lot of dough.
    _________________

    Don’t be naive. it’s always about money.

  36. godfatherd says: Mar 13, 2013 9:11 PM

    In his time with the Lions he only had few plays you would call impressive. Lots of running past the QB and looping back for a coverage sack. Still would have loved to have him back in detroit. He can be counted on for 8-10 sacks a year and a few qb strips.

  37. bigbadballs says: Mar 13, 2013 9:12 PM

    Wow that is a bargain. Reminds me of what Adrian Beltre did with the Red Sox, get your value up by playing with a good team.

  38. mjkelly77 says: Mar 13, 2013 9:13 PM

    tjh9985 says:Mar 13, 2013 8:58 PM

    Seattle got a great deal
    ___________________

    Yeah, if Avril brought Suh and Fairley with him. Unfortunately you’ll see what I mean this upcoming season.

  39. kazkal says: Mar 13, 2013 9:13 PM

    Flavordave you have issues,I’m from Oregon and I’ve never seen someone this much on Chip Kelly jock.Seriously eagles lookin like crap wait till they prove something before you start talking smack.

  40. slugdc says: Mar 13, 2013 9:14 PM

    If $15 million is “losing” I’ll be a loser any day. XD

  41. ravenscaps48 says: Mar 13, 2013 9:15 PM

    Not so bad. He’ll be winning the NFC Next Year and will play against Denver in the Super Bowl

  42. hungerforce says: Mar 13, 2013 9:17 PM

    Correct me if I’m wrong Dave, but didn’t LaMichael James say something earlier in the year about about Chip Kelley’s read-option offense already existing in the NFL? Something tells me the Eagles aren’t going to the league by storm this next season..

  43. peytonsneck18 says: Mar 13, 2013 9:19 PM

    i bet he is beating up his agent as we speak, but im sure hes happy to be out of Detroit and that bad lions team, and hes in a “legal” state now

  44. fcs34 says: Mar 13, 2013 9:20 PM

    I’d take a pay cut too to get away from Swartz and Detroit.

  45. whitecastleisafoodgroup says: Mar 13, 2013 9:20 PM

    Do we know what Detroit was going to pay? Why is this a bad deal? Avril goes from a wannabe playoff team to a contender for $7M a year. Not to mention if things don’t work out the Seahawks can cut him next year.

    What’s the loss for Seattle? Nothing!

    NFC West is looking pretty solid next year.

  46. mblue24 says: Mar 13, 2013 9:22 PM

    Avril wasn’t that good anyway. See ya.

  47. gbatap says: Mar 13, 2013 9:22 PM

    It’s worth 5M$ to not have to plaay for the Lions. Now he actually has a chance at winning something.

  48. oreo51 says: Mar 13, 2013 9:23 PM

    There is no state income tax in Washington. That probably saves him $1 million a year.

  49. txtroutslayer says: Mar 13, 2013 9:24 PM

    Wait instead of getting 30 million, he’s only
    Getting 25 million? That poor man. Hope I can sleep
    Tonight…is there some sort of find set up
    To help him out????

  50. ninerider says: Mar 13, 2013 9:24 PM

    He’s a 4-3 DE correct and he’s going to a Seattle team that plays a 3-4. Should be interesting.

  51. txtroutslayer says: Mar 13, 2013 9:25 PM

    Wait instead of getting 30 million, he’s only
    Getting 25 million? That poor man. Hope I can sleep
    Tonight…is there some sort of fund set up
    To help him out????

  52. conner87 says: Mar 13, 2013 9:25 PM

    Silly Cliff, you turn down 3 years/30 mil and then take 2 years and 15 mil the following offseason.

  53. jackdaniels1 says: Mar 13, 2013 9:26 PM

    My God! He only made $25.5 million vs $30 million??? What a LOSER!!!

  54. truthbeforepride says: Mar 13, 2013 9:26 PM

    He’ll play for a better team for less money pruducing the same (or lower) stats and STILL not get to the Superbowl. love it.

  55. peytonsneck18 says: Mar 13, 2013 9:27 PM

    SEATTLE FANS, CALM DOWN, u guys arent SB champs, harvin will miss games cause of migrains, and rice is washed up and nobody can name another wr on yr team, and wilson is decent, but hes not a SB caliber type of QB, only Luck is!!!!

  56. packerbackernj says: Mar 13, 2013 9:28 PM

    Im praying for the headline tomorrow “percy harvin says seattle is a dream team”

  57. pappavike says: Mar 13, 2013 9:29 PM

    There shall be excuses for the seahawks now It would be interesting to hear who get’s thrown under the bus!! If thier season doesn’t end with super bowl win!! With all the hype surrounding the Seahawks thiers no place to go but down. Just because you have the talent, Doesn’t mean you get the results you want

  58. praetorian12 says: Mar 13, 2013 9:29 PM

    In other news… San Fran just signed Dwight Freeney… lol.

    But seriously, great deal for Seattle. Avril has a better pedigree than Chris Clemmons. Similar players. If Clemmons can get 13+ sacks in Seattle, what will Avril do?

    I think Bradford, Kolb and Kaepernick just shuddered.

  59. jrock3x8 says: Mar 13, 2013 9:30 PM

    Lets not forget that he was playing in Detroit. I might want it of there too.

  60. wkdblc52 says: Mar 13, 2013 9:33 PM

    Great pickup Schneider ! If Chris can come back healthy along with Irvin and now Avril, I can see close to 50 sacks for the Hawks next season ! Beat those dammed Niners !

  61. firstvictory says: Mar 13, 2013 9:34 PM

    i always laugh at the notion on this site (and many others) that it all comes down to money. or that one thing necessarily means another (like the guy who ran the 4.19….because he didn’t run track, he couldn’t have possibly run that fast). it’s not a single variable universe. maybe he decided that it would take more than 10 milly to stay in detroit if he were going to play for a team with a lot of question marks. and after they weren’t answered this year, he decided he’d rather play in a city he liked and for a team with a 20% chance to win the super bowl…not that the lions are bad but let’s call a spade a spade.

  62. olyhawk says: Mar 13, 2013 9:39 PM

    After playing in the clink his next contract at 28 will be lucrative. 12 sacks.

  63. firedup1 says: Mar 13, 2013 9:40 PM

    It should be interesting between San Francisco, Seattle, and Atlanta.

  64. blowpackblow says: Mar 13, 2013 9:41 PM

    Fiscal Cliff Avril

  65. cmdrsmooth says: Mar 13, 2013 9:43 PM

    You don’t think he would have ever seen those 30 million. Just saying

  66. arlingtonsynn says: Mar 13, 2013 9:46 PM

    Chance to contend on a team in a legal weed city… or Detroit + 5M?

  67. harrisonhits2 says: Mar 13, 2013 9:52 PM

    Somehow he’ll just have to suffer through with the paltry 12 mil or so he’ll be left with after taxes and agent’s fees.

    I know it will be insanely difficult for him to do so, but no one said life would be easy.

  68. truelionsfan says: Mar 13, 2013 9:52 PM

    Is it just me, or did all of you Seattle fans forget that those crappy Lions beat you last year. Good luck with that guy who routinely gets blocked by tight ends.

  69. howiehandles says: Mar 13, 2013 9:52 PM

    I wish that I had his problems.

    What a loser, getting paid 25 million, last and next two years, to work 6 months a year playing a freaking game.

  70. detroitlives says: Mar 13, 2013 9:54 PM

    CLEARLY cliff is either too arogant or too stupid to realize that he is a by-product of Suh and Fairley.

    He should have taken the 10 mil/year from Detroit and hand a personal check to the DT’s beside him.

  71. ray0414 says: Mar 13, 2013 9:57 PM

    lions fan here. cliff avril was ALL ABOUT THE MONEY. he has been saying it for the past year. he has even said he wanted mario williams money. he was expecting to get 12-14 a year! i didnt even want the lions to offer him the 10 they offered last year, w hich im glad he turned out. this guys agent really had him convinced he was gonna get PAID. then free agency s tarts and the phone doesnt even ring. he basically took the first deal that came along, which is proven by the fact he agreed to the deal before even getting on the plane and meeting the new coaches etc. he didnt take a pay cut to play for seattle, he took a paycut becuase nobody was gonna pay him more than that plain and simple.

  72. joecool16280 says: Mar 13, 2013 9:59 PM

    and the SEA vs SF chess match continues

  73. stoolerz says: Mar 13, 2013 10:06 PM

    Well to Seattle cliff. Where the fan base consists of panty wastes that prefer soccer and the wnba over football. .
    The town is for nerds and losers.

  74. djasonoma says: Mar 13, 2013 10:18 PM

    you seachicken fans drive my nuts. You are the most desperate team in the NFL. Pathetic is the true term. Peetie will mess things up and I believe russell wilson will not produce as he did last year. Keep trying Hahahahahah…stoolerz ewoks up in seattle..

  75. ckinthekc99 says: Mar 13, 2013 10:25 PM

    Like weed being illegal stops anyone from smoking weed?

  76. peytonsneck18 says: Mar 13, 2013 10:25 PM

    i was station in bremerton washington, a hour from seattle, and that state is gloomy and depressing, no wonder that made “trees” legal there, and theres alot a rhino built women there too

  77. zeeman911 says: Mar 13, 2013 10:29 PM

    Have fun in Seattle, plug the next guy in next to suh and fairly and see how he does…he will probably put up similar numbers…

  78. mjkelly77 says: Mar 13, 2013 10:31 PM

    firstvictory says:Mar 13, 2013 9:34 PM

    i always laugh at the notion on this site (and many others) that it all comes down to money … he decided he’d rather play in a city he liked and for a team with a 20% chance to win the super bowl…not that the lions are bad but let’s call a spade a spade.
    _____________

    Nah. Avril was looking for the biggest payday and said as much himself. He panicked and signed the first offer. He shouldn’t have listened to his agent in the first place.

  79. godevilsasu says: Mar 13, 2013 10:37 PM

    Proof that all he cared about is money. Hope you turn out to be a flop. Traitor…

  80. theboondoggles says: Mar 13, 2013 10:39 PM

    flavordave says:
    Mar 13, 2013 9:01 PM
    15 million, with all due respect here, is not a loss. The loss occurs when he plays Chip Kelly and the Eagles intricate offense.

    _______________________________

    Okay, I’m officially a flavordave fan.

  81. theboondoggles says: Mar 13, 2013 10:42 PM

    The real question is how will the move to Washington affect his state income taxes?

  82. acromartieismydad says: Mar 13, 2013 10:52 PM

    stoolerz says:

    Well to Seattle cliff. Where the fan base consists of panty wastes that prefer soccer and the wnba over football. The town is for nerds and losers.
    ————————
    Well than count me among the most rabid Sue Bird fan base on Earth that found time to support our “other” football team to another undefeated sellout season.

    Sincerely,
    Panty Waste / Nerd / Loser #12

  83. ballboy48 says: Mar 13, 2013 11:08 PM

    I wonder why so many teams stayed away from Avril. He was expected to get between $10-$12 Million and be gone on Day 1, to Cleveland or Indy. They must have watched tape on him, and saw something they didn’t like.

  84. fasteddy415 says: Mar 13, 2013 11:14 PM

    Don’t recall hearing his name and we’ve faced the Lions in consecutive years…Plays poor against NFC West Teams. More concerned with Harvin..

  85. norcalsportsknowledge says: Mar 13, 2013 11:27 PM

    Avril 260 lbs. Irvin 248 lbs. They’re good players but their very light and one dimensional. (speed rushers) Neither can cover, but they both can pin their ears back and get after QB. Teams will run on them.

  86. osiris33 says: Mar 14, 2013 12:03 AM

    Seattle will never be in “salary cap hell.” We have the richest owner in sports, so all we have to do is convert base salary to signing bonuses for cap relief. Few teams can afford to do that. We can.

  87. rublestiltzkin says: Mar 14, 2013 12:16 AM

    Thought I was reading the comics for a sec, but a closer look proved it WAS the avril post. One dude said harvin was gonna have a migraine cuz he hasn’t had one in over two years. Another posted his stats against nfc west teams, but forgot to mention the combined 9 forced qb hurries along with 5 batted/tipped passes. Nice try there……then there are the droves of free thinkers who credit only suh and fairley with cliff’s success. I could see your point last year with suh a little, maybe. But want nick hurt for a gods portion of the time they played together? If any other team traded for percy and signed cliff, they would be go getters and trying to win. But seattle does it, and the haters come from all directions trying to conjure up reasons it’ll fail. Seattle us gonna play in and win the super bowl over the favorite broncos. So, you all keep hating and doubting, we prefer it that way anyway

  88. claytonsmith1984 says: Mar 14, 2013 12:58 AM

    I like this move by the Seahawks cause those three DE’s r gonna dominate teams cause it will be harder for teams to prepare for cause how dynamic Clemons, Avril and Irvin are it’s a major upgrade for the Seahawks cause they got a big time play maker in Percy harvin and a very good pass rusher in cliff Avril don’t be surprised if u see the Seahawks in the run for the championship in 2013!

  89. angrylionsfan says: Mar 14, 2013 1:04 AM

    See ya Cliff. Business is business, and every player has the right to negotiate the best offer they can get because they could get a career ending injury tomorrow, but he was all about the money. Detroit made him a fair offer (and too much money IMO) last year and he turned it down to make less money on a shorter contract.

    Time will tell what kind of numbers he puts up in Seattle, but he is NOT a Mario Williams, Jared Allen, Julius Peppers, or Damarcus Ware caliber DE and he didn’t deserve to be paid like one. On a team with an average to mediocre D Line he’s a 6-7 sack player.

  90. blackhawks2010 says: Mar 14, 2013 1:18 AM

    Good bye San Franciso.

  91. claytonsmith1984 says: Mar 14, 2013 1:47 AM

    Teams last season had no success in running the ball against them except for Adrian Peterson but he’s not human!! Lol so why would it be any different in the 2013 season?!!!

  92. norcalsportsknowledge says: Mar 14, 2013 2:25 AM

    Because Clemons your best run defender and DL is coming off a major injury and you lose a DE with decent size and replace him with a guy who weighs 260. That’s why the Seahawks will not be as good against the run as the were last year. lol

  93. c0upe says: Mar 14, 2013 3:40 AM

    Much props the 9ner fans in this thread, good luck this season

  94. thecuckoo3 says: Mar 14, 2013 5:26 AM

    Who cares?? Seahawks sign another overrated player. Whats new?

  95. mack2x says: Mar 14, 2013 10:18 AM

    “Clearly playing for a winner was important to Avril.”—

    No, playing for the only team that offered him a contract before the free agent money started drying up, was important to Avril.

  96. seahawksteven777 says: Mar 14, 2013 1:28 PM

    I’d like to point this fact out. Remember when Chris Clemons was acquired from the Eagles and had done virtually nothing prior to coming to the Seahawks? When he came here, he produced double digit sacks in 3 seasons thus far.

    What I’m saying is that Cliff Avril could end up the same way. Of course, Avril is more proven than Clemons coming into Seattle but maybe Avril will benefit more by playing in Seattle’s system like Clemons did.

    Time will tell.

  97. beastmode5150 says: Mar 14, 2013 1:43 PM

    Hawks haters, spend time looking who we have traded for, and how much better they are now, and also the no names and late round picks that are now all pro’s and cornerstones. Keep hating and making stuff up though, it’s super entertaining.
    Seattle>than where you live

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