NFL Players Next in Line for Big Extensions After Joey Bosa's Megadeal
Business keeps right on booming in the NFL.
Los Angeles Chargers edge-rusher Joey Bosa was the latest with his five-year deal worth $135 million. Kansas City Chiefs star Chris Jones wasn't far behind and got four years and $80 million, and Myles Garrett of the Cleveland Browns got five years and $125 million.
Most notable, of course, was Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes, checking in at 10 years and $503 million.
Next up after Bosa and other recent monster deals? More star quarterbacks, the elite guys who protect them, catch passes from them and get after them.
The following players are most likely next in line based on team cap space and the likelihood of trying to get something done, meaning a star such as Los Angeles Rams cornerback Jalen Ramsey doesn't make the cut given his team's iffy cap outlook.
Ronnie Stanley, OT, Baltimore Ravens
Ronnie Stanley is the top guy responsible for keeping reigning MVP Lamar Jackson safe, and the Baltimore Ravens figure to lock him up on an extension before Jackson needs one soon.
Doing so won't be cheap. Stanley, the sixth pick in 2016, just topped out at a career-best 88.5 Pro Football Focus grade last year, allowing no sacks and getting called for just four penalties.
Behind his effective play, Jackson not only excelled, but the Ravens also piled up 3,296 rushing yards on a 5.5 average while averaging 407.6 yards and a league-topping 33.2 points per game.
Stanley will probably want to check in somewhere near the $22 million per year the Houston Texans gave Laremy Tunsil.
Jamal Adams, S, Seattle Seahawks
Former New York Jets safety Jamal Adams already made one massive splash with his trade to the Seahawks.
That's just the beginning. He is one of the NFL's best, so it's only a matter of time before he upgrades on his rookie deal.
The sixth pick in the 2017 draft lines up all over the place, including every spot in the secondary, at linebacker and even on the edge. That explains his 75 total tackles, 6.5 sacks, one interception and two forced fumbles last year on an 87.9 PFF grade while only letting up a 55.3 completion percentage on 38 targets.
He should comfortably be at the top of the market in the $14 million AAV range after playing this year on his current $3.59 million deal.
George Kittle, TE, San Francisco 49ers
Rob Gronkowski might be back, but George Kittle is the best tight end in the game.
That means he is going to break the bank at some point, even if NFL Network's Ian Rapoport reported things are "not particularly close" so far.
Kittle, a fifth-round pick in 2017, erupted for 1,377 yards and five scores on a 15.6 per-catch average in 2018 with a CJ Beathard-Nick Mullens tandem under center. When Jimmy Garoppolo returned in 2019 and Kittle's targets dipped from 136 to 107, he still scored five times with 1,053 yards on a 12.4 average.
His usage might've gone down, but his all-around play improved, hence the staggering 95.0 PFF grade. Austin Hooper just reset the market by making north of $10 million on average in Cleveland, and Kittle is easily going to be in that range.
Yannick Ngakoue, Edge, Jacksonville Jaguars
Yannick Ngakoue and the Jacksonville Jaguars didn't agree to an extension or find a trade partner before the deadline, yet he's still destined to be one of the biggest contractual splashes of the next year.
Being an elite pass-rusher at 25 years old in today's NFL tends to do that.
The 2016 third-round pick is one of just seven players to record eight-plus sacks in each of his first four years. Last year, en route to a 72.0 PFF grade, Ngakoue piled up eight sacks with 27 pressures and 10 hurries.
On the franchise tag (if he signs), Ngakoue slots eighth in average salary among edge-rushers at $17.79 million. An extension after the season figures to at least keep him in the top 10, and while he might not come close to Bosa's $27 million average, climbing above the $20 million mark would make sense.
Dak Prescott, QB, Dallas Cowboys
As expected, Dak Prescott will play 2020 on the franchise tag.
Last-minute discussions stalled before the extension deadline passed, with NFL Network's Jane Slater reporting talks were in the $33 to $35 million per season range. It's not too surprising considering Prescott just watched Mahomes check in around the half-a-billion mark.
Prescott, a career 65.8 percent passer, boasts 15,778 yards and 97 touchdowns against just 36 interceptions on the resume alongside a 40-24 record.
He has plenty of leverage, and a second tag would be around the $37 million price point in a season where the salary cap could get reduced to offset revenue losses from limited attendance.
Prescott has also watched the Cowboys give out massive money to DeMarcus Lawrence ($105 million), Ezekiel Elliott ($90 million) and Amari Cooper ($100 million) in recent years.
Deshaun Watson, QB, Houston Texans
Now that Patrick Mahomes signed long term, Deshaun Watson figures to be next up. And back in April, ESPN's Ed Werder reported the Houston Texans engaged in preliminary talks with Watson.
He might've come up short against his rival in Kansas City in the AFC divisional round, but Watson is still the guy with a career 66.8 completion percentage alongside 9,716 yards, 71 touchdowns and just 29 interceptions.
Don't forget the additional 1,233 yards and 14 scores as a runner over 38 games, in which he holds a 24-13 record and last season registered an 81.0 PFF grade.
Given he has one of the best chances to carry a team to Super Bowl contention in the same conference as Mahomes, Watson is bound to come close to that market-resetting deal, albeit with fewer years attached.