Lions sign RB Malcolm Brown to offer sheet

Justin Rogers
The Detroit News
Malcolm Brown is coming off his best season, averaging 4.9 yards a carry while backing up Todd Gurley.

Allen Park — The Detroit Lions may or may not have a new running back for the team's backfield rotation. The Lions signed Los Angeles Rams restricted free agent Malcolm Brown to an offer sheet on Tuesday. The deal is reportedly worth $3.25 million.

The Rams tendered Brown before the start of free agency giving them five days to match the Lions' offer. Because it was an original-round tender, and Brown went undrafted out of the University of Texas in 2015, the Lions wouldn't be required to forfeit a draft pick if the Rams opt not to match. 

Los Angeles might not have the funds to bring Brown back. The team entered Tuesday with less than $9 million in cap space before agreeing to a two-year contract with free agent linebacker Clay Matthews, reportedly worth up to $16.75 million.

Brown, 25, is listed at 5-foot-11, 222 pounds. In four seasons with the Rams, he's carried the ball 128 times for 514 yards. He's coming off his best season, averaging a career-high 4.9 yards per carry while backing up Todd Gurley. 

In addition to his contributions in the Rams' backfield, Brown also played a role on special teams, averaging more than 10 snaps per game with the units. 

He finished last season on injured reserve after suffering a clavicle injury in December. 

Brown would join a Detroit backfield headed by Kerryon Johnson. The Lions also return Zach Zenner, who re-signed in free agency, and Theo Riddick.

Twitter: @Justin_Rogers