If you’re a highly accomplished receiver, there is a good chance you got handed a bag at some point this offseason.
And according to NFL Network insider Ian Rapoport, Deebo Samuel’s got next:
Rap Sheet reports it is a three-year contract worth up to $73.5 million for Samuel, who joins recent big-money extension signees DK Metcalf and Terry McLaurin in getting three-year deals. These short-term extensions might be a surprise to some, but things appear to have been heading in this direction for some time. The trend right now seems to be for receivers to get shorter deals with high AAV and a chunk of guarantees now, then get to the cusp of hitting the market again in a few years and cashing in again. It is a bold strategy, but one that could lead to some of the league’s best pass-catchers netting multiple landscape-altering contracts. Good for them. And I hope those who come after and get theirs tip their caps to those who came before them.
When big-time extensions like this go down, I try to see it through Bears-tinted lenses. But when doing so while thinking about receivers, it feels like the Bears missed a window to add impact talent at the position. There was so much movement this offseason. We saw high-profile receivers (ex. Tyreek Hill, Davante Adams, AJ Brown, Robert Woods, Amari Cooper) change teams via trade. There were 13 receiver prospects go in the first two rounds of the NFL Draft (including six chosen after the Bears’ first selection). And there was all sorts of free agency dealings that I’ve lost count at this point.
To be fair, getting Velus Jones Jr. in the third round of the draft was the only impact addition at the position. Jones has been impressive in camp and I’m looking forward to following his development. But still … it feels as if there were other chances to further bolster the receivers room. You know, to safeguard against putting too much on Darnell Mooney and a third-round rookie. So while there will be cap space and opportunity in years to come, seeing Samuel join the likes of AJ Brown, DK Metcalf, and Terry McLaurin get extensions stings. Watching those players lock into extensions means there will be fewer impact receivers than we would’ve been hoping to see hit the market.
And yet, I’m looking forward to what is to come down the line. But we can cross that bridge when ewe get to it.