Nate Burleson restructures contract with Detroit Lions


Coming off a broken leg that ended his season early, Detroit Lions wide receiver Nate Burleson acknowledged in January that he would have to take a pay cut to stay with the team.

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Burleson made good on that promise Thursday, announcing via Twitter that he agreed to a contract restructuring (seen below).

Burleson's agent, Ken Sarnoff, told's Ian Rapoport that "Nate will be a Lion next year." A source with knowledge of the deal told Rapoport that it's still a two-year deal for the wideout. Other contract details weren't available.

Burleson never had a chance at collecting his scheduled $4.5 million salary that included a $6.5 million salary-cap hit. A compromise made sense for both sides.

A team leader and reliable outlet receiver for Matthew Stafford, Burleson's value to the Lions has increased following Ryan Broyles' second anterior cruciate ligament surgery and problem child Titus Young's release. The new contract ensures at least one more season in Detroit for the 31-year-old wideout.

The Lions continue to clear salary-cap space in an effort to lock up impending free-agent pass rusher Cliff Avril. The next step will be an extension for Stafford that will ease the $20.3 million cap hit for the 2013 season.

Follow Chris Wesseling on Twitter @ChrisWesseling.