Martin Mayhew said Monday that while there still were some free agents he was pursuing, most of the heavy lifting was done.

"Yeah, I think in terms of those big contracts, I think they're starting to wind down from a free agency standpoint," Mayhew said, taking a lunch break during the league meetings. "We got the draft coming up and we've got some of our own guys who we're trying to sign."

Mayhew acknowledged negotiations continue with veteran kicker Jason Hanson and possibly defensive end Lawrence Jackson.

"There will be some other signings, I would think," he said. "And then obviously after the draft we have a period of time to continue to try to add to our roster and look for guys whether it's signing free agents or street free agents or trades, whatever the possibilities are."

The team was believed to be tight against the cap, but according to a Yahoo Sports report, wide receiver Calvin Johnson restructured his contract to save the team another $3.4 million. According to the report, he transferred the bulk of his $25 million base into a bonus, lowering his cap hit.

"We've got some challenges from a cap standpoint, but we have some flexibility to do some things, make some moves," Mayhew said.

Mayhew made it clear, though, that the inability to work a contract extension for quarterback Matthew Stafford was not hampering the process. Mayhew said there was no expectation a deal would get done before free agency.

"No, not at all," he said. "I talked to you guys before about that being a process. As I said before, the contracts for the good players are more difficult to do. For the players that aren't good, you just tell them what you plan on paying them. That's the way it goes, but I'm not at all disappointed.

"It's going to be a process to get that done, and we're working on getting that done right now."

When told fans were voicing their displeasure with Stafford for not doing a deal, Mayhew defended him.

"We've been very deliberate in the process," Mayhew said. "We haven't been pressing him. There's never been a sense of extreme urgency on our part that we had to rush and get something done. He's by no means putting the brakes on.



From The Detroit News: http://www.detroitnews.com/article/20130319/SPORTS0101/303190351#ixzz2NztnTNHu