Once the 2020 NFL Draft is in the books, Detroit Lions general manager Bob Quinn will have a little more than a week to make a critical decision about the future of linebacker Jarrad Davis.
As a first-round pick in 2017, the Lions hold a fifth-year option on Davis' rookie contract, which they must exercise prior to the league's May 3 deadline. As for Friday night, Quinn said he remained undecided on the decision.
For players selected outside the top-10, the fifth-year option is a one-year salary worth the average of the third-25th highest-paid players at their position. That should net Davis in the ballpark of $10 million.
The fifth-year option will continue to be guaranteed only for injury this season, before becoming fully guaranteed in future years as part of the league's new collective bargaining agreement ratified this offseason.
Davis has had an up-and-down start to his NFL career. Quickly assuming a leadership role in the locker room, his on-field production has been inconsistent. His most promising season was 2018, when he started all 16 games, tallying 100 tackles, 6.0 sacks and an interception, all while making needed improvements in coverage.
But 2019 brought regression, potentially tied to a severe ankle injury he suffered during the preseason and reaggravated late in the year. In 11 games before landing on injured reserve, he finished with 63 stops, 2.0 sacks and three forced fumbles.
Dahl gets green light
Lions left guard Joe Dahl also finished last season on injured reserve due to a back injury, but much Quinn revealed about quarterback Matthew Stafford's recovery last week, Dahl would have the green light to participate in the offseason program, had it not been moved to a virtual format in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
"Joe’s healthy," Quinn said Friday night. "I talked to Joe on the phone a couple of weeks ago. He’s doing well. If we had an offseason program, he’d be a full participant."
Dahl, a fifth-round pick in 2016, earned a contract extension from the Lions last offseason prior to winning a starting job. He started 13 games before suffering his injury.