(97.1 The Ticket) The Lions were one of four finalists in the bidding for three-time All-Pro Richard Sherman, but the team couldn’t match the incentives offered by the 49ers.
Sherman signed a three-year deal with San Francisco on Saturday that’s worth up to $39.15 million.
Per reports, Sherman, who was released last week by Seattle, narrowed his list of suitors over the weekend to the 49ers, the Seahawks, the Raiders and the Lions. He had a visit scheduled with Detroit this week, per NFL Network.
But San Francisco went hard after Sherman right from the start, and reached an agreement with the star cornerback during a four-hour meeting Saturday afternoon. Per the MMQB, Sherman gave the Seahawks, the Raiders and the Lions the chance to match the 49ers’ offer:
“Late in the process, when Sherman and the Niners agreed on most of the incentives in the deal, he got back to the three most interested teams. Seattle, interestingly enough, wanted the first right of refusal on any offer, and so Sherman called Seahawks GM John Schneider. Sherman said Schneider told him, “Incentives [are] a little rich for me.” Sherman called Oakland GM Reggie McKenzie, who said he wasn’t going to have the cap money to compete for him. And Sherman called Detroit coach Matt Patricia and GM Bob Quinn; incentive package too rich for Detroit’s blood.”
The base value of Sherman’s deal is $21.15 million ($7 million guaranteed), with another $18 million tied to roster bonuses and incentives, per Pro Football Talk. For Sherman, who’s coming off a torn achilles and turns 30 this month, to rake in the full $39.15 million, he’ll have to play all 48 regular-season games over the next three years, play at least 90 percent of the snaps, make it to the Pro Bowl every year and qualify for the All-Pro team every year.
Clearly, he’s betting on himself.
After being released by the Seahawks, Sherman said he wanted to sign with a contender. That he was considering the Lions reflects well on their roster.
Detroit will now turn its attention to another high-profile free agent: running back DeMarco Murray, who’s scheduled to meet with the team on Monday. The Lions currently have about $27 million in cap space for 2018, per OverTheCap.com.
Their cornerbacks under contract next season are Darius Slay, Teez Tabor, Jamal Agnew, Adairius Barnes, Charles Washington and Des Lawrence. Nevin Lawson and D.J. Hayden, the duo who logged the most playing time opposite Slay last season, are both set to become unrestricted free agents.
The signing period begins Wednesday at 4 p.m.