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Lions' Cliff Avril Says It's Just Business; Might Not Be In Camp Day 1

At the time of writing, there are about 10 minutes left until the deadline for the Detroit Lions to get defensive lineman Cliff Avril signed to a long-term contract. It's already been reported that a deal is not coming though and that Avril will play the 2012 season on the franchise tag. The team will not be able to sign him to a long-term contract until the end of the upcoming season.

Avril had a statement, which Tim Twentyman posted on Twitter, in which Avril says it's just business and he's not stressed:

So it seems Avril will be able to come in and do his job, but there is definite disappointment there. On top of that, Avril said it was likely he wouldn't be in camp on day one, as reported in another tweet. That's somewhat worrying, because it's an issue that happens quite a bit with franchised players and their performance almost always suffers because of it.

NFL training camps are specifically designed so players are ready for Week 1 of the season. When franchise-tagged players don't sign their tags and instead elect to wait until the last minute before coming into camp to play, they often are a bit sluggish and rusty throughout the first couple weeks of the season. Still, Avril says above that he's trying to get better, so hopefully his personal camp is just as good.

For more on the Detroit Lions, check out Pride of Detroit. You can also get all of your professional football news over at SB Nation's NFL hub.