Lions still sitting on approximately $30 million in cap space
According to NFLPA records, the Detroit Lions have $29.6 million in cap space remaining, following the team's frenzy of free-agent signings. Only the Cleveland Browns have more.
Obviously, some of that cap space is allocated toward future expenditures, including the team's upcoming draft class. The No. 3 pick alone is projected to count more than $6 million against the cap.
But even with general manager Bob Quinn's long-standing preference to carry a healthy buffer into the regular season, it would seem the Lions have additional room to spend when building out the roster for the 2020 season.
"Yeah, we have a little bit of room," Quinn said Friday. "Obviously, there’s other factors involved if you guys realize about other types of budgets. I think we’ve spent a considerate amount of money in free agency this year, at various different positions. So, we have other things on the horizon, whether that’s internally, or whether that’s stuff that we’re going to do into the season that we’re planning for with some of our current players.”
Two internal items potentially lingering on the docket are contract extensions for wide receiver Kenny Golladay and offensive tackle Taylor Decker. Based on recent deals around the league, Golladay could be looking at an extension that pays him an average of $15 million per season, while a new contract for Decker should come in between $12-14 million per season.
Both Golladay and Decker are entering the final years of their rookie contracts. After earning a performance-based bump to his 2020 salary, Golladay will earn $2.13 million next season. Decker, as a former first-round pick, will play on the fifth-year option that will pay him $10.35 million.
Even if both agree to extensions, the Lions should be in good shape with the cap, leaving the team room to add another significant player, either in free agency or via a trade. Having a buffer is what allowed the Lions to comfortably sign Mike Daniels to a significant one-year contract during training camp last year and absorb Damon Harrison's sizeable contract in a midseason trade in 2018.