By Ashley Dunkak
CBS DETROIT – The most talkative wide receiver in the Detroit Lions locker room, the sage veteran willing to contribute to every discussion, one of the team’s most vocal leaders, and the subject of perhaps the most bizarre off-field incident ever, Nate Burleson will not be returning to the Lions in 2014.
Burleson, 32, caught 39 passes for 461 yards in 2013 but missed seven games after breaking his arm in an early-morning car crash that occurred when Burleson reached for pizza boxes sliding off the passenger seat of his SUV.
The Canada native began his career with three years in Minnesota, followed up that stint with four years in Seattle and had been with the Lions since 2010.
Burleson was set to earn $5.5 million in 2014, but none of it was guaranteed, so the Lions save that full amount. According to ESPN, the team is now just $2 million above the cap.
Just as one might expect from the wide receiver who gracefully and humorously fielded dozens of detailed questions week after week about his pizza incident, Burleson issued his own statement on Twitter about the transaction.
Though several close to the team offered the idea that Burleson could simply sign back for less money, Burleson’s acknowledgement of the move and gracious farewell make it seem that Burleson’s career in Detroit is definitely done.