On Wednesday, Mike O'Hara of the Detroit Lions' official website reported that defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh had restructured his monster-sized contract to help the team free up some room under the salary cap.
According to a source with knowledge of the renegotiated contract, Suh's latest restructure allowed the Lions to clear $7.68 million in cap space in 2013.
Suh was originally scheduled to earn $12.15 million in base salary and, due to a restructure on March 12, 2012, his cap hit this season had reached a ridiculous $18,172,500. Under the renegotiation, Suh's base salary has been lowered to $630,000, the league minimum for a player with three accrued seasons in the NFL, and the remaining $11.52 million was converted to a signing bonus that will be spread across the three seasons that remain on Suh's contract.
While the Lions picked up considerable cap space, the downside of the Suh renegotiation is that they'll have to do it all again next offseason, most likely signing the No. 2 overall pick in the 2010 NFL Draft to an extension. The Lions have forfeited much of their leverage as the two restructures have increased Suh's cap number to $21,412,500 for the 2014 season.