Los Angeles Rams defensive tackle Aaron Donald is heading into the final year of his rookie contract, but he is apparently set for a major payday.
Rams general manager Les Snead hinted as much on The MMQB Podcast with Peter King, referring to Donald as "someone who is on the verge of being the highest-paid defensive player in football," via Chris Wesseling of NFL.com.
Snead was discussing the signing of Ndamukong Suh at the time, noting how much having the two elite players together would help in 2018.
The Rams have been one of the most aggressive teams in the NFL during the offseason, adding Suh, Brandin Cooks and Marcus Peters among others. However, the general manager assured worried fans that the added money won't prevent the team from re-signing Donald.
"We've got good dialogue with their agents. I'll keep all of that in-house, but none of it affects Aaron Donald," Snead said last week, per Jeremy Bergman of NFL.com. "He's one of 53 and as I've said plenty of times before, we've got that budgeted into the budget. We didn't do all this and forget about him for sure."
Donald deserves all the money he can get after being named the 2017 AP Defensive Player of the Year. He has been named a Pro Bowler in each of his four seasons and was first-team All-Pro in each of the last three seasons.
Bleacher Report's NFL1000 rankings listed him as the No. 5 player in all of football.
Unfortunately, he hasn't been paid accordingly as he remains under his rookie contract. He held out last season before returning to the team without a deal.
Suh was the highest paid defensive player in the NFL based on average yearly salary, per Spotrac, but after his release that honor goes to Denver Broncos star Von Miller. It seems Donald will top the $19 million per year mark and finally be paid like a superstar.