The Lions have until July 16 to sign franchise-tagged defensive end Ziggy Ansah to a long-term deal. It sounds like they won’t need that long.
Appearing this week on PFT Live, Lions G.M. Bob Quinn seemed to indicate that the team is more likely to take a wait-and-see approach with Ansah in 2018, before deciding whether to make a multi-year commitment. Quinn spoke in terms of new coach Matt Patricia getting to know what Ansah. In theory, Patricia could see enough to conclude that a long-term contract is justified before the deadline for finalizing a deal — if Ansah signs the tender and shows up for the offseason program.
But without a long-term contract, Anshah isn’t likely to attend the offseason program. Making it harder for Patricia to conclude that the franchise-tagged pass rusher should be part of the franchise’s future.
Ansah, a first-round pick in 2013, concluded his rookie deal in 2017. Injuries have contributed to a sense of inconsistency, which has prompted the Lions to opt for caution before committing major money to Ansah.
If Patricia likes what he sees from Ansah, it could end up being very expensive to keep him in 2019. At a tag this year of $17.143 million, Ansah would be entitled to a 20-percent raise for next year. That would be $20.57 million for a second season under the tag.