The word is out already. The Lions were able to talk a few of their key players into taking a pay cut for the upcoming year. Key core players such as QB Matthew Stafford, DT Ndamukong Suh and WR Calvin Johnson were all able to rework their contracts in order to be able to save the Lions an estimated 11 million dollars for the upcoming year as well as over 40 million in the next 3 years. (Associated Press) reports that they were able to defer a lot of their salaries for the 2012 season into signing bonuses to be able to save money for the team against the cap.
These key changes have allowed the Lions to continue winning the off-season by allowing them to be in the running for WR Darrius Heyward Bey (former Raiders 1st round pick). This would be a great upgrade for a team that lost WR Titus Young earlier in the off-season (released due to attitude issues) and is in desperate need for another wide receiver to compliment Calvin Johnson, Nate Burleson and Ryan Broyles (who missed last few games due to injury). The key thing for the Lions in terms of Heyward Bey is the speed aspect. He ran a 4.35 in the 40 yard dash and would add a speed receiver to the Lions to pair up with the receivers and tight ends (along with newly acquired HB Reggie Bush) to make Stafford happy for years to come.
Stay tuned for more updates on the Lions this week as talks are heating up with the projected pick for the Lions at #5 now switching to the defensive side of the ball. (AP broke news of Lions LB Justin Durant being signed by the Cowboys at the time of this post).