Detroit Lions Free Agency 2023

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Detroit Lions free agency.

Detroit Lions Free Agency 2023


The Lions were one of the surprise teams during the 2022 NFL season. After a rough 1-6 start, the team rallied behind head coach Dan Campbell to finish 9-8 and barely missed the playoffs. They finished second in the NFC North behind the Vikings. Questions loom as the offseason is in full swing. Here’s what you need to know about Detroit Lions free agency for 2023.

Detroit Lions 2023 NFL Free Agents

Jamaal Williams has the potential to be one of the top free-agent targets in the league. The running back had a franchise record 17 rushing touchdowns during the 2022 season. It seems like the Lions want to re-sign the 27-year-old, but that will depend on the price and if they want to break the bank for Williams.

On defense, DeShon Elliott had a solid season with 96 tackles and an interception at the safety position. The Lions need to consider Elliott as his contract expires. Also, defensive lineman John Cominsky will enter the market. He had 4 sacks and a forced fumble in 2022. The team has a few run defenders hitting the market from the d-line.

Lions linebacker Alex Anzalone led the team racking up over 100 tackles on the year. He finds himself a free agent at the end of the season after a solid year including 6 pass deflections, an interception, and a forced fumble.

The Lions also see wide receiver DJ Chark becoming an unrestricted free agent. He had 502 receiving yards and three touchdowns last year.

Unrestricted Lions Free Agents

To be an unrestricted free agent, there are a couple of qualifications. An NFL player must have four or more years of experience and their contract has to have expired or been voided. They can negotiate with any team without any restrictions or draft-choice compensation. Here’s a list of impending free agents for the Lions who are unrestricted.


Nate Sudfeld – QB

Running Backs

Jamaal Williams – RB

Justin Jackson – RB

Wide Receivers and Tight Ends

DJ Chark – WR

Centers, Guards, and Tackles

Evan Brown – G

Defensive Tackles, Defensive Ends, and Edge Rushers

Michael Brockers – DT

Isaiah Buggs – DE

Austin Bryant – DE

John Cominsky – DE


Alex Anzalone – ILB

Chris Board – LB

Jarrad Davis – ILB

Josh Woods – LB

Cornerbacks and Safeties

Mike Hughes – CB

Deshon Elliott – S

Will Harris – S

Amani Oruwariye – CB

Special Teams


Restricted Free Agents

A restricted free agent is a player who has played for three or fewer accrued seasons and has an expiring contract. The team can assign a tender to the player, which allows them to match any offer the player receives from other teams. The team receives draft compensation if the player signs elsewhere.

2023 NFL restricted free agents for the Lions

Bobby Price – S

Benito Jones – DT (exclusive restricted free agent)

Scott Daly – LS (exclusive restricted free agent)

Tommy Kraemer – G (exclusive restricted free agent)

Matt Nelson – T

Anthony Pittman – LB (exclusive restricted free agent)

Dan Skipper – T

Brock Wright – TE (exclusive restricted free agent)

Salary Cap and Roster

The team is projected to have a decent amount of cap space. This means the Detroit Lions could target a few key pieces and dip into free agency in 2023. The NFL salary cap is $224.8 million for the 2023 season.

Jared Goff commands a $30 million cap hit. Many Lions fans figured they wouldn’t want him to stay after the 2021 season, but he had a great 2022 run this past season. The team might reconsider his long-term future.

There is plenty of excitement for the 2023 NFL Draft. Even though they finished 2022 with a 9-8 record, they have the number six pick thanks to the trade with the Los Angeles Rams.

Last offseason, the Lions scored Aidan Hutchinson with the number two overall pick. He had 9.5 sacks as a rookie and top pass rusher on the team including 3 in one game vs the Washington Commanders. Jeffrey Okudah showed flashes as a shutdown corner after he returned from Achilles surgery.

Lions Free Agency 2023 FAQs

When does free agency begin?

NFL free agency will commence on March 15, 2023. It begins at 4 p.m. eastern time. The date signifies the start of the new league year and the end of all player contracts. Many players are set to hit the market and gain free agency status.

What is an unrestricted free agent?

An unrestricted free agent is a player whose contract has expired, and they have no ties to their former team. Starting on March 15, they are free to negotiate with any team in the league without restrictions.

What is a restricted free agent?

A restricted free agent can be extended what is called a qualifying offer. If offered, they are still allowed to negotiate with other teams around the league. Their current team is allowed to match any offer.

Can teams talk to players before free agency begins?

There is a “legal tampering” period that begins on March 13. Teams can talk to certified agents but no signings can be made until free agency is official.

Author: Sam Russell

Sam hails from Grandville, Michigan. He has a rich sports background, including playing baseball at Central Michigan before covering high school sports and working with the Orlando Magic. He earned his degree from Central Michigan University and was a member of the 2010 MAC Championship baseball team. Sam grew his knowledge of sports betting while working with Betsperts in various areas such as writing, social media, betting research, and business development. He's a big fan of the NBA, NFL, and MLB, highly interested in data and statistics.