Lions put franchise tag on DE Cliff Avril
The Detroit Lions have placed the franchise tag on defensive end Cliff Avril.
Detroit made the move Monday, the last day the team could keep him from becoming a free agent next week.
The Lions retain Avril with a one-year contract, paying him the average of the five highest-paid players at his position. Both sides can continue to work on a long-term deal.
Detroit general manager Martin Mayhew has said he didn't plan to use the franchise tag and Avril made it clear he didn't want it.
The 25-year-old Avril has 19 1/2 sacks the past two seasons and 30 in his four-year career. He was a third-round pick out of Purdue in the 2008 NFL draft.