With the NFL Scouting Combine recently completed, all the current talk in the NFL is focused on the upcoming draft. But there's an equally important, much closer event approaching.
On March 12, the Lions will join 31 other teams in the league's annual money-slinging free-agency cycle. Some teams will stay quiet, while some make huge splashes with big contracts only to regret them in two years.
The Lions have some of the biggest decisions to make yet in the Mayhew/Schwartz administration. Some of their earliest decisions and draft picks are coming back around, and they have to decide whether to renew contracts or admit those picks weren't good enough for new contracts.
Likewise, there are players on the market currently that the Lions have (or could have) interest in. With the salary cap becoming a major issue, any decisions they make are going to have a lot to do with the kind of money involved.
That said, the Lions have already stated an interest in getting involved in free agency, and that doesn't just mean re-signing players and looking for table scraps on one-year deals.
So if the Lions are going to be active in free agency, they're going to have to avoid the pitfalls that come with it. These are some of the biggest "don'ts" for them in 2013.