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Friday, January 4, 2013

Ashlee Palmer inks 2 year deal with Detroit Lions

       The Detroit Lions and Outside Linebacker Ashlee Palmer finished up a deal early on Thursday, that will keep him in a Lion uniform through 2014.

      Ian Rapoport reported the deal is worth $1M in 2013 and $1.25M in 2014 with a $1M signing bonus. Palmer had 24 TKL's on the season along
with 1 FF playing in all 16 games. Earlier this week, Palmer was named to the Pro Football Focus All-Pro Team as a member of the special teams unit.

      Martin Mayhew said earlier this week that the Lions needed more Defensive play-makers. The Lions had a plus 11 (4th in NFL) turnover ratio last season and minus 16 (30th in NFL) this season. "We have a lot of guys, who are good guys, that line up right, they know what their job is, but they don't impact the game," Mayhew said. "We need interceptors, guys that can sack the quarterback, we need guys that cause fumbles, that make plays on third down. Those are the kinds of guys that can change the game for us." Palmer seems to fit this role. In 2010, before Deandre Levy and Justin Durant took over both OLB positions, Palmer started 5 games accumulating 55 Tkl, 1 sack, and forced three games while playing on special teams in all 16 games. 

      Both Levy and Durant are set to hit Free Agency this off-season but neither seemed to fit Mayhews bill. With only 1.5 sacks and 1 FF in two full seasons as a Lion, Durant doesn't have the side line speed nor the play-making ability to receive the money he will want. Levy had 4 picks 1 sack and a Forced Fumble the past three seasons and at 25 years old, he seems a safe bet to return at a fair price. 

     As the salary cap hits hard this off-season for the Lions, they can rest assured that Palmer will be here as a backup option at Outside Linebacker.

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