Detroit Lions general manager Martin Mayhew said he's not ruling out the possibility of using the franchise tag on defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh, according to a report from the Associated Press.
Suh is in the final year of a five-year contract worth more than $60 million. The Lions selected Suh with the No. 2 overall pick in the 2010 draft. The 28-year-old has earned four Pro Bowl nods and been selected to four All-Pro teams.
Over 16 games this season, Suh recorded 54 tackles and 8.5 sacks while helping the Lions rank first in the NFL in rushing defense. According to the report, the team prefers to sign Suh to a long-term deal. If Detroit were to use the franchise tag on Suh, it could cost nearly $27 million.
ESPN's Adam Schefter reported in September that Suh is likely to leave Detroit in free agency, but Mayhew reportedly said Suh is "open" to remaining with the Lions.
"He likes to win, I know that," Mayhew said, according to the report. "I know he likes coach (Jim) Caldwell, I know he's very comfortable here in Detroit, so those things all play in our favor. At the end of the day money talks, so we'll have to step up in terms of pursuing him financially as well."
The Lions went 11-5 and finished in second place in the NFC North this season before falling to the Dallas Cowboys in the Wild-Card round of the playoffs.