So far Martin Mayhew and the rest of the Lions’ front office have been able to weather Phase 2 of the Millen effect. Phase 2 of the Millen effect again is having to deal with the monetary aspect of the first round draft picks once their rookie contracts are up. For instance they’ve succeeded in locking down the best wide-out in the game long-term in Calvin Johnson while holding onto guys like Stephen Tulloch, Chris Houston and Shaun Hill.
Still though they’re not out of Phase 2 as nine key defenders are without contracts in 2013 (DE Lawrence Jackson, DTs Corey Williams and Sammie Hill, LBs DeAndre Levy and Justin Durant, S Louis Delmas and CBs Chris Houston and Jacob Lacey) all while franchise QB Matthew Stafford will have two years left on his rookie deal.
Now in terms of Stafford’s current deal Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press explains, because they converted much of the QB’s base pay to signing bonuses the past two seasons, the cap numbers on Stafford skyrocket in 2013 ($20 million) and 2014 ($19 million). Not only that Birkett believes that the Lions will approach Stafford about a contract extension sooner rather than later, most likely this upcoming season.
After New Orleans’ $100 million dollar deal with Drew Brees that guaranteed him $60 million dollars, two player-side cap analysts believe Stafford’s next deal could include the same guaranteed money ($60 million). Still though keeping in mind players on the defensive side of the ball that will need to be re-signed in 2013 it’s imperative Mayhew leaves himself some wiggle room for other negotiations.
Ref: Detroit Free Press