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Lions GM: Talks with DeAndre Levy, Haloti Ngata ongoing

ALLEN PARK, Mich. -- The Detroit Lions are in the process of negotiating contract extensions for two of their defensive stars, linebacker DeAndre Levy and defensive tackle Haloti Ngata.

Detroit general manager Martin Mayhew said Tuesday he is in conversations with the agents for both players and while deals do not appear to be imminent with either player, he would like to keep both around. Mayhew said he would keep negotiations with Levy open as long as there is progress on both sides.

Levy was tied for second in the NFL in interceptions in 2013 with six and led the league in solo tackles in 2014 with 117. Mayhew said he knows what type of player he has in Levy, praised his leadership and work ethic and wants him with the Lions for a while.

"He's a phenomenal talent," Mayhew said. "We want to have him around. We're not trying to get him on the cheap."

Mayhew said he has had discussions with Levy about his dangerous offseason activities, which have included wing-walking on a plane in Washington state, sliding down a volcano and traveling all over the world.

There is language in Levy's contract that designates what he can and cannot do, but Mayhew indicated he won't push for anything stricter in this deal with Levy just because he's shown a desire to take offseason risks.

"He has to live his own life," Mayhew said. "I can't dictate that for him. He knows the repercussions if things go bad with that."

Levy said Sunday he would like to stay with the Lions because he likes the team's defensive scheme and the city of Detroit. The Lions drafted Levy in the third round of the 2009 draft.

The Lions traded for Ngata in March after the franchise lost Ndamukong Suh in free agency to Miami. At the time of the trade, the Lions indicated they would eventually like to get a deal done with him in the long term.

The 31-year-old Ngata was a first-round pick of Baltimore in 2006 and has been one of the top defensive tackles in the league since. Mayhew said Ngata being over 30 is not a concern for the Lions because of the position he plays.

"Defensive linemen, offensive linemen play a little bit longer than corners and receivers," he said. "I think those guys have the ability to play at a higher level for a longer period of time. So we have a number of guys here that played at a very high level on the offensive line as they got older.

"So I don't think it's going to be a concern. He is what he is. He's five times in a row in the Pro Bowl, five times in a row an All Pro."