DeAndre Levy
Dallas Cowboys running back DeMarco Murray (29) scores on a touchdown run as he is hit by Detroit Lions outside linebacker DeAndre Levy (54) during the third quarter in the NFC Wild Card Playoff Game at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, Jan. 4, 2015. Reuters/Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

The Detroit Lions gave linebacker DeAndre Levy a four-year, $33.72 million extension along with guaranteed $20 million. Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network reported the development on Twitter.

Levy, who was drafted by the Lions in the third round of the 2009 NFL Draft, started 10 of 16 games as a rookie and established himself as one of the top defensive players in the league. He was the Lion’s Most Valuable Player on Defense in the last two seasons.

For his six-year NFL career, all with the Lions, Levy is credited 618 tackles, 3.5 sacks and 12 interceptions. Levy was a member of the NFL All-Pro Second Team in 2014 when he had 151 tackles, 2.5 sacks and an interception.

Among all outside linebackers, Levy’s new annual average will put him among the top five paid in the entire league, and his total compensation is the highest among all 4-3 outside linebackers, according to

The Lions have made the playoffs twice in two of the last four seasons but lost both times in the wild card round, to the New Orleans Saints in 2011 and the Dallas Cowboys in 2014.

With the help of Levy, Detroit is one of the top defensive teams in the league. In the 2014 regular season, the Lions allowed 300.9 total yards per game, the second fewest in the league in yards allowed.