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Nate Burelson mulls pay cut to stay with Detroit Lions


Nate Burleson likely will have to take a pay cut to stay with the Detroit Lions. He'll entertain the option.

"We'll see what happens," Burleson told the Detroit Free Press. "I talked to the coaches, actually talked to (general manager Martin Mayhew) upstairs today and talked about my value to the team, being missed on and off the field. I told him I want to retire here. He said he feels the same way."

Burleson caught 27 passes for 240 yards and two touchdowns in six games before a broken leg ended his season. He was part of the massive losses the Lions suffered on offense -- Titus Young, Ryan Broyles, Brandon Pettigrew.

Burleson is the No. 2 receiver, but he's also a team leader who had a positive effect on Calvin Johnson's development. The Lions, however, have 24 unrestricted free agents and little salary-cap room to fit Burleson's scheduled $4.5 million base salary.

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"The city loves me, the team loves me, so we'll figure it out," Burleson said. I think it takes both sides to make that happen, and if anybody knows me, it's more about football than it is anything else. So without saying too much, I'm willing to work it out because I love this team, and I feel like this is my best chance to win a Super Bowl before I shut it down in a few years."

The Lions do love Burleson and his personality. They just need to find a salary number they can love, too.

Follow Kareem Copeland on Twitter @kareemcopeland.


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