Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports reports that “several league sources” have informed him that the Buccaneers are “pushing hard for a pass rusher” and believe that they will “do what it takes” to sign free agent DE Cliff Avril.
It’s unlikely that free agent DE Michael Bennett will be retained, so it makes plenty of sense to see them involved in other defensive ends. Previous reports have indicated that Dwight Freeney, Osi Umenyiora and John Abraham could all be options, but pursuing Avril could cost them as much as $10 million annually.
The Browns are also believed to have serious interest in Avril as well.
We have him listed as the No. 2 best available player in our Top 50 Free Agents list.
Richardson adds that it’s unknown whether or not the Lions are among the interested teams in Avril.
Avril, 27, is clearly among the most sought after free agents and the fact that NFL teams believe he can play 3-4 outside linebacker only adds to his value.
He reportedly rejected a three-year deal worth $30 million and included as much as $20 million guaranteed last season. Clearly, that was the right move for him given that the Lions wound up paying him a franchise tender of $10.605 million last season and he’s now poised to beat those figures by a large margin.
The Browns are rumored to be one of the teams with serious interest in Avril.