Originally posted on isportsweb.com  |  Last updated 3/15/12

When Cardinals wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald signed an eight-year, 120 million dollar deal last year, it was the biggest contract ever signed by a pass-catcher.

The Detroit Lions decided Wednesday to move Fitzgerald’s contract down to second biggest when they re-signed Pro Bowl wide receiver Calvin Johnson to a seven-year contract extension worth $132 million.

The blockbuster deal includes $60 million guaranteed, the most guaranteed money in NFL history according to ESPN.

“For any player, being able to remain in one place for his whole career brings out a comfort level in the player that he’s able to go out and do the things he does without worrying about anything,” Johnson said.

Valid statement Megatron- just ask Peyton Manning.

While that example is a particularly bad one right now, it does emphasize the business aspect of today’s NFL, where nothing is guaranteed or predetermined.  While it appears this contract will make Johnson a Lion for life (which I sincerely hope), things change with the blink of an eye in today’s sports world.

Johnson cited security as well as quarterback Matthew Stafford as reasons for wanting to stay in Detroit through the 2019 season.

“The kid has an arm. I see what he can do every day in practice and he does it on the field too,” Johnson said. “I wouldn’t even consider walking away from that because it’s tough to come around a good quarterback, especially one as good as he is.”

This deal helps the Lions right away, as Calvin’s new contract opens up $9 million of cap space for the coming season.  This gives the Lions room to go after free agent prospects such as Stephen Tulloch and Brandon Carr.  Tulloch is the likely candidate, but if that falls through, don’t be surprised to see Detroit make an offer to Carr.


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