And after a dalliance with other teams at the start of free agency, Whitehead decided to return to the Lions on Wednesday, signing a contract that the NFL Network is reporting is worth $8 million for two years. Further details were not immediately available.
The 6-foot-2 Whitehead began his career with the Lions on special teams out of Temple in 2012. During the past two seasons, though, he turned into a reliable linebacker.
He was inserted into the lineup after Tulloch tore his ACL in the third game of the 2014 season, and ended up with a career-high 77 tackles and two interceptions. In a platoon role this season he had 47 tackles, a sack and an interception.
Whitehead was the Lions' special teams MVP in 2013, and has 33 special teams tackles in his first four seasons.
He has been one of the more active Lions players in the community as well, often showing up at charity events on Tuesdays during the season.