The Detroit Lions have the most players under contract in the NFL

SideLion Report

There are obviously still moves to be made for everyone, but the Detroit Lions have the most players under contract in the NFL right now.

Through the first few days of free agency, the Detroit Lions have very clearly prioritized retaining their own with one outside signing, notable or otherwise (DJ Chark). There is room to make more moves, and other teams will be adding, but the NFLPA’s league-wide update Thursday morning is pretty eye-opening.

For salary cap purposes, only the top-51 players count for each team. But teams can and do carry 90 players under contract when offseason work starts. But that tally, the Lions have a league-high 72 players under contract. The New York Jets are he next-highest at 69 players under contract, and seven more teams have at least 60 players currently under contract ( by that count, entering Thursday).

As Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press noted, that Lions’ tally did not include the contracts given to Charles Harris, DJ Chark and Kalif Raymond.

Detroit Lions current contract tally updated

Over The Cap has updated the contract tallies around the league. The Lions have 74 players under contract, with Raymond not on so it’s really 75 once that deal is official, with the signings they’ve made and Trey Flowers off the roster in the dead money column after being released. That $12.85 million dead money hit also means Flowers was not designated as a post-June 1 cut, and since he was released with a failed physical designation he couldn’t have been made a post-June 1 cut (h/t to Pride of Detroit for the clarification, and check out this explainer from them about the failed physical designation).

The Lions 90-man offseason roster will be filled and shaped by any additional free agent signings (internal or external), draft picks (nine right now), undrafted free agents and any other maneuvering that’s done to add or release players over time. But a large portion of who they’ll have for early OTAs are already signed to contracts, for whatever that’s ultimately worth.

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