The Detroit Lions cleared around $8.5 million in cap space last week by releasing a trio of players. The moves not only got the Lions under the projected salary cap, but they gave them some cap room to work with as well. This will especially be important when free agency begins next month, but it was really just the first step in clearing cap room.

What remains to be seen at this point is just how many additional moves the Lions will make in order to give themselves more cap space. They could extend Matthew Stafford's contract to free up cap space, and they could also release additional players. A lot will depend on how the offseason develops and what plans they put together for free agency. Lions president Tom Lewand said as much this week, noting that "the cap is fluid." From the Lions' official site:

"The optimal range is dependent on the opportunities that exist, not just on the cap space available," Lewand said. "You’ve got to look at what possible methods of player acquisition are in front of you, what players are available to be acquired, how they fit your system, all of the different things that are involved in the complexity of the system and marry that up to what your available cap room is."