From the no-brainer department, the Detroit Lions used the franchise tag on Cliff Avril, which was expected. ESPN's Adam Schefter reported the news, and Avril will now be paid $10.6 million on a one-year contract for the 2012 season.
The two sides continue to negotiate on a long-term deal to keep Avril from going anywhere. They have until July 15 to come up with a deal or else Avril has to play the year on the franchise tender. Avril previously indicated he wouldn't be giving the Lions a hometown discount, so it will likely be expensive to keep him for an extended time.
Avril has shined on a defensive line full of stars. He was originally a third-round pick in the 2008 NFL draft and comes off his best year as a pro with 11 sacks. The Lions defensive line is scary, and keeping Avril should continue that. He's only 25 years old, so he could be just getting started.