Nate Burleson tweets a picture of his restructured contract

Posted by ttwentyman on February 21, 2013 – 10:50 pm

Burleson's contract

True to a promise he made to reporters right after the season, Detroit Lions veteran receiver Nate Burleson has restructured his contract.

Burleson tweeted a picture of the restructured contract on his official Twitter account Thursday evening with the message: “When I said I was gonna ‘Retire a Lion’. I meant it! Restructure = Stronger Lions = Better Team”

It’s no wonder why Burleson is both a fan favorite and locker room leader.

Burleson is the second veteran to agree to a restructure this offseason. Center Dominic Raiola restructured the final year of his deal last week.

The Lions cleared approximately $8.5 million in salary cap room earlier this month by releasing Titus Young, Stephen Peterman and Kyle Vanden Bosch.

The financial details of of both Burleson and Raiola’s deal have not been released, but the restructures give the Lions more leeway to fill some holes via free agency in March.

Detroit Lions general manager Martin Mayhew is trying to work on a long-term contract for quarterback Matthew Stafford that would lower his $20-plus million cap number for 2013 and give the team even more room to work with this offseason.

Burleson said after the season that he’s ahead of schedule in his return from a broken leg suffered in October at Chicago on Monday Night Football.

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Nate Burleson makes a free agent plea to Reggie Bush

Posted by ttwentyman on February 18, 2013 – 1:35 pm

Receiver Nate Burleson made it very clear Monday who he’d like to see the Detroit Lions pursue in free agency.

Making an appearance on the NFL Network this morning, Burleson made a personal plea to running back Reggie Bush.

“I’m going to just say this, ‘Reggie Bush, you already took your talents to South Beach, come on to Detroit,’” Burleson said, looking right into the camera. “I know it’s not as sunny, and it might not be the same type of glitz and glamor, but you can do wonders for us.”

The Lions are looking for a running back with some “juice” as general manager Martin Mayhew said after the season. The Lions dearly missed that element in their backfield last season when Jahvid Best (concussion) never got his clearance to return. The Lions are looking to add that element back into their offense this offseason via free agency or the draft if Best isn’t able to return.

“Reggie Bush has proven that he’s still explosive, and me and (Steelers safety Ryan Clark, appeared with Burleson on the NFL Network) talked about it off air. He still has that legend behind him,” Burleson said.

“He came from USC, and everybody knows he can go out there and shake a little bit, wiggle a little bit and break that big run. And for him to put up two 1,000-yard seasons the last couple years proves that he’s still an elite running back. And if I can get Reggie Bush in a Detroit Lions uniform, ooh-wee, watch out.”

Bush turns 28 in March and is one of the top free agent running backs on the market.

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NFL gaffe puts Pro Bowlers in jerseys donning pre-2003 Lions logo

Posted by ttwentyman on January 28, 2013 – 2:46 pm

Ndamukong Suh

Photo: USA Today

The NFL fined 49ers running back Frank Gore $10,500 for wearing his socks too low in the NFC Championship Game.

The league is notoriously strict when it comes to enforcing its dress code. Detroit Lions receiver Nate Burleson was fined $5,000 last season for not showing white in his socks during a Monday Night game.

For a league so obsessed with its uniform, it was funny to see Ndamukong Suh and Don Muhlbach wearing a pre-2003 Detroit Lions logo on their Pro Bowl jerseys Sunday night.

That’s two logos ago for those who are curious.

The NFL is solely responsible for the jerseys players wear every time they step on the field. The team does no alterations to the uniform.

It’s unclear if the league plans on fining itself for the gaffe.

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WR Nate Burleson recipient of the Mike Utley Spirit Award

Posted by ttwentyman on January 12, 2013 – 6:25 pm

Nate Burleson’s season ended Oct. 22 in Chicago when he broke his leg after catching a 16-yard pass in the third quarter.

But that didn’t prevent Burleson from returning to the sidelines only a few weeks after suffering the injury, pumping up the team in the huddle before the game, and showing his support throughout the remainder of the season.

Burleson is the definition of a good teammate and it’s just one of the reasons he was voted the recipient of the Mike Utley Spirit Award by his fellow Lions for the 2012 season.

The Mike Utley Award is presented to the player who exhibited tremendous spirit, desire, dedication and work ethic. This award is given in honor of former Lions guard Mike Utley, who suffered a career-ending neck injury which left him paralyzed on Nov. 17, 1991; Minutes after sustaining the injury, Utley flashed his teammates a “thumbs up” sign as he was wheeled from the field, a gesture that galvanized a team that went on to win its next seven contests and advanced to the NFC Championship game.

Burleson had 27 receptions for 240 yards and two touchdowns before the injury. He’s been an intrical part of the offense over the last three seasons and an even more important presence in the locker room and receivers room.

He said after the season that he’ be willing to restructure his deal next year to give the Lions more freedom under the cap and so he can retire a Lion.

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Nate Burleson talks the Lions’ 4-12 season, Titus Young, Jim Schwartz and more

Posted by ttwentyman on January 8, 2013 – 4:41 pm

Lions receiver Nate Burleson appeared live in-studio this morning on NFL Network’s NFL AM. Burleson has been busy appearing on a number of media outlets in recent weeks, preparing for a possible post-football television career.

During his appearance Tuesday, he talked about the Lions’ 4-12 season, Titus Young, Jim Schwartz and more.

On finishing the season 4-12 after making the playoffs in 2011:

“There are so many things you can point to. I’m a guy that doesn’t make excuses; as one of the leaders on the team, I’m going to say it’s on us. It’s our responsibility to make sure that we perform at the same level we did in 2011, and we just didn’t. The type of games that we won so often in 2011 we couldn’t do this year; in the third and fourth quarters, it always seemed there was one play that just shut us down and we couldn’t overcome.

“We have to come back this offseason as leaders and figure out what it is; how to bring that fight back, that dog back, that tenacity and enthusiasm that we played with. I remember in 2011, we felt like we were backed into a corner every game, and in 2012 we just didn’t have that. As leaders, we have to figure that out.”

On if there was a sense of complacency after making the playoffs in 2011:

“From the outside looking in, a lot of people thought that. That might have been the perspective that ‘maybe they feel like they’ve arrived’. That’s not the case. We’re still as hungry, we’re still as passionate and we didn’t become complacent in where we were. It’s just that we didn’t finish, and that’s a big deal in this league. Every game is going to be decided by the seven or three points, and this year we just couldn’t overcome that. That’s what falls on the shoulders of the players.”

On if he was surprised that Lions head coach Jim Schwartz was not fired:

“No, I wasn’t surprised just because he has brought so much to this organization and he has created a different type of attitude. For so long, the Detroit Lions were somewhat of the armpit of the NFL, and nobody cared. Now, people are starting to take notice. This year was a huge step back; 4-12 is not where we wanted to be.

“I was surprised that we fired our receivers coach Shawn Jefferson. He’s a big-time coach, a great asset, a guy that can come in every day and motivate the best player in the game in Calvin Johnson. I was surprised in that but the team has to make moves and you just have to go with the punches.”

On wide receiver Titus Young:

“Titus is like a little brother to me. He’s a guy that I’ve given a lot of energy to over the last couple of years. For a lot of the reasons that people might misunderstand what he does, I appreciate Titus. He’s young, he’s passionate. Guys come into the NFL and they’re complacent in where they are; they got it, they’re drafted, they have the money, now they relax. Titus, he doesn’t want to relax. He wants to be the best, he wants to be the guy, and sometimes that gets in the way of his role on the team.

“I have to talk to him and say, ‘We’re with Calvin, so for so many reasons we have to be the background dancers; we have to go do our thing, we have to be Tito, he’s [Michael Jackson] so let him do his thing and we’ll back him up when he needs us.’ He has a clear understanding of that now. Being exiled, some suspensions, he’s going to get back to where he needs to be because he’s a great asset. He’s one of the great route runners I’ve seen and he’s only a couple of years into the league. He has tremendous hands, so if we can get him on the same page he can help us quite a bit.”

On what element might be missing from Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford’s game:

“I wish I could pinpoint that. Being a receiver, I never claim to be a quarterback coach. I hear everything that everybody says about the way he throws, his mechanics, his footwork, but I could tell you this that there are throws that he makes that nobody else can make. That’s why he’s in the position that he is. Just like every other athlete in the offseason, you go back to the drawing board, you work on the little things; you build on the strengths and you work on the weaknesses. So for Matt, I believe he’s going to do that regardless of whatever it is. He needs to take that next step.

“In my eyes, he’s a really good quarterback; I’m waiting for him to take that elite step and he has the capability of doing that. I’m excited for next year because he’s young. Just because he got thrown into the fire, they expect so much of him and he’s overachieved a lot since he’s come back from his early injuries. Almost two 5,000-yard seasons is hard to do. He’s come back and proved he can be that guy. I want him to be elite though and a lot people do. There is a lot of pressure on him but that’s why you get paid the big bucks.”

On who is the league’s MVP:

“That’s Calvin Johnson. If we were winning – say we got to the playoffs – he would definitely be in the conversation. Now, Peyton Manning – unbelievable coming back from the neck, going to Denver and doing more for that city almost than [Tim] Tebow did and Tebow caused hysteria out there. Adrian Peterson coming back from the ACL, I had an ACL in 2008 so I know how difficult that is. But the things that Calvin does, he’s in the same boat as AP: everybody knows he’s going to get the ball but he still gets the ball regardless. He’s out there getting viced in the slot like he’s about to cover a punt, so he creates coverages that I haven’t seen since playing with Randy Moss.”

On whether Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford should be setting records for pass attempts:

“It is a lot but I believe that he should. When you have a guy like Calvin [Johnson], you have no choice but to put the ball up there as many times as you need to … Now, you’re not going to hit every one, but when you get that big catch in fishing it makes it worthwhile. When you go out there and you have that big game, that highlight catch that Calvin creates, it’s worthwhile all of those attempts.”

On how he is recovering him his broken leg:

“It’s good. I have a little hardware in there. I’m early in the rehab stages but I’m ahead of schedule, which is a good thing. I’m trying to get back. I’m 31, have a couple more years on my contract. Trying to get back to where I was and get the team back to where we were.”

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Burleson to appear on ESPN as NFL Guest Analyst; will sit down with Jerry Rice

Posted by Chrissie Wywrot on December 17, 2012 – 5:53 pm

Wide receiver Nate Burleson will join ESPN as a guest analyst on several shows Wednesday, Dec. 19, and Thursday, Dec. 20, including a pairing with Jerry Rice on NFL Live.

Burleson and Rice will discuss Calvin Johnson nearing Rice’s NFL single-season receiving record total. Johnson is currently 181 yards from matching Rice’s total in 1995.

Wednesday, December 19
First Take – ESPN2, 10am – 12pm
SportsCenter (ESPN, 12 – 3pm)
NFL Live (ESPN, 4pm)

Thursday, December 20
NFL Live (ESPN, 4pm)

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No Bentley or Lacey at practice; Greenwood practices for first time

Posted by ttwentyman on October 17, 2012 – 3:11 pm

The Lions were afforded an extra day of practice today by means of their upcoming Monday night game against the Bears.

Cornerbacks Bill Bentley (shoulder) and Jacob Lacey (concussion) did not participate in the portion of practice open to the media, though. Both were injured in Sunday’s victory in Philadelphia and did not finish the game.

Also sitting out practice Wednesday were: defensive end Cliff Avril, defensive tackle Corey Williams, linebacker DeAndre Levy and receiver Nate Burleson. Avril, Levy and Burleson all finished the game Sunday.

The Lions will not have an injury report today because they play on Monday night, which means we’ll have to wait another day to get word on the extent of some of these injuries.

As expected, rookie cornerback Chris Greenwood was back on the practice field after missing the first six weeks while on the PUP list for an abdominal tear.

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Sirius NFL Radio Training Camp Tour visits Detroit Lions

Posted by Lindsay Selengowski on August 15, 2012 – 12:17 pm

Sirius NFL radio attended practice this Tuesday as part of their 2012 Training Camp Tour.  Jim Miller and Keith Bulluck sat down with several players including QB Matthew Stafford and WR Calvin Johnson to discuss their thoughts on the preseason so far.

Full audio from all of the interviews are available on the website:

Stephen Tulloch
Nate Burleson
Calvin Johnson
Brandon Pettigrew
Matthew Stafford
Dominic Raiola
Cliff Avril
Kyle Vanden Bosch

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Day 4: Burleson finishes boot camp and is selected to be a guest co-host on SiriusXM NFL Radio

Posted by Molly Mita on June 23, 2012 – 2:59 pm

Wide receiver Nate Burleson was one of 23 current and former players who was chosen to attend an intensive four-day broadcast boot camp in Mount Laurel, NJ.  At the end of Day 4 Burleson earned a guest co-hosting spot on SiriusXM NFL Radio this season. He filled in after each day.

Day 4:

“Today went great. We did our play-by-play. I was commentating and that was interesting. That was the most nerve-racking experience of the week. That’s something I never had experienced before. It was a really role reversal to commentate on what other players are doing out there and a lot fun to do.”

“It was just a one shot deal. Once I put the head set on you just go.”

“After that we networked and exchanged numbers. We had one last opportunity to get to know the staff and everyone who participated at the boot camp.  Then there was one last meeting. They announced who was awarded the opportunity to co-host the show.

“I don’t know what the criteria was but I was selected by the staff and the people from SiriusXM NFL radio to be a guest co-host on the show. I’m really excited for that it’s a big honor. I’ve been on the show before but this will be a great opportunity for me.”

“I learned a lot the past few days, I really did. One thing I learned is in order to get your point across it is better to slow down and be articulate rather than to just rush through it.”

“Second I learned to just be myself. If you’re original, authentic, and the same guy you’ve always been you give people the opportunity to like you or not. You can be the absolute best you can be but you can only be the second best version of someone else.”

“I would encourage anyone who wants to do this to submit their tapes and go through the screening process to try and get selected for this “Broadcast Boot Camp. It’s a one of a kind experience. I have to thank the NFL on what they put together. It isn’t just a bunch of people and a microphone. It’s a true boot camp. You’re well taught. It was just a really great experience.”


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Day 3- Burleson gets creative at “Broadcast Boot camp”

Posted by Molly Mita on June 22, 2012 – 7:22 pm

Wide receiver Nate Burleson was one of 23 current and former players who was chosen to attend an intensive four-day broadcast boot camp in Mount Laurel, NJ.  At the end of Day 4 Burleson earned a guest co-hosting spot on SiriusXM NFL Radio this season. He filled in after each day.

Day 3:

“Today was really great. I was able to get creative and do some writing and I learned a lot from the feedback I got.”

“We did live interviews with another “Broadcast Boot camp” player. It was about the mandatory use of pads that the NFL brought down on the players for 2013. We did that at Sports Authority. That was pretty fun. We went to the local Sports Authority so we were “live on location.” What they did was act as though they were pitching the new use of pads to us. We had to take that and write our own questions.”

“I wrote my own intro and outro. That’s my thing. I love to write and get creative. It’s fun for me to tell a story in my own way. I got some great feedback on my introduction specifically on how I was able to draw my audience in. My outro I tried to be clever with. It went really good.”

“Tonight we have the whole roster of the Baltimore Ravens and the Pittsburg Steelers. We watch the game tomorrow and then we break down nine minutes of play-by-play. We are going to be the analysts in the studio. I’m going to have fun with that and see what angle I can speak the game through. That is something that will be new for me. I have never done play-by-play before. I was always the one playing the game.”

“The whole experience has been really interesting and a great opportunity. Tomorrow is our last day. We get out a little earlier. I don’t know what to expect but I’m excited to see how it goes.”

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