The Detroit Lions should have around $4 million in salary cap space for the upcoming 2016 season and this may not be enough to help rebuild several key areas on both offense and defense.
The Lions find themselves at a crossroads with Calvin Johnson having a cap hit of $24,008,000, this means one of two things, Johnson will either restructure his contract or be released. There is no way the Lions could pay Johnson that type of money and expect to have a competitive team around him.
Fellow wide receiver Golden Tate will also be an issue for the Lions in terms of saving some cap room, Tate will count $7,101,250 against the 2016 cap. Stephen Tulloch, Glover Quin, and Brandon Pettigrew are all players who will be hitting a point in their contracts where their cap hits begin to balloon. Pettigrew at age 30 is on the roster bubble as the Lions have already drafted his heir apparent in Eric Ebron. Ebron will count $4,650,000 against the Lions cap so it will be no shock if he gets released.
Glover Quin will also see his cap hit rise to $7,577,500 however his stellar play this season might warrant a contract extension. Quin played in all 16 of the Lions games and recorded 4 interceptions, a defensive touchdown, a forced fumble, and 5 pass defenses. The Lions will have a lot of holes to fill on their roster this offseason.