Saints' Alvin Kamara Not Concerned About New Contract Talks Entering Season

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistAugust 21, 2020

New Orleans Saints running back Alvin Kamara (41) runs against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers during the first half of an NFL football game Sunday, Nov. 17, 2019, in Tampa, Fla. (AP Photo/Mark LoMoglio)
Mark LoMoglio/Associated Press

New Orleans Saints running back Alvin Kamara suggested Friday he isn't concerned about his contract situation entering the 2020 season.

During an appearance on NFL Network's Inside Training Camp Live on Friday (h/t NFL.com), Kamara made it clear his focus is on getting ready for the season: "I don't know where we at. I'm here working, I'm here practicing. Whenever that gets handled, it gets handled. I'm just doing what I gotta do for now."

Kamara is entering the final year of his rookie contract in 2020 and is set to make $2.1 million, per Spotrac.

The 25-year-old has been named a Pro Bowler in each of his three NFL seasons, but his numbers last season were down considerably from the previous year.

In 2018, Kamara rushed for 883 yards and 14 touchdowns and caught 81 passes for 709 yards and four scores. Last season, though, he had 797 yards rushing and just five touchdowns along with 81 receptions for 533 yards and one score.

Kamara was limited to 14 games and made just nine starts last season as he worked through ankle and knee injuries. He said Friday he is hoping to bounce back in a big way in 2020:

"Honestly, I just want to go out and be the best version of me. Obviously, last year with injuries I was kinda held back, didn't get to really do what I wanted to do. I was on pace the first couple of games and was feeling great. I just want to show what everybody's used to and that's a powerful, explosive, highlight-making running back. So that's what I'm focused on."

Kamara is likely the second-best pass-catching running back in the league behind the Carolina Panthers' Christian McCaffrey, as he has reeled in 81 receptions in each of his first three seasons. If he can maintain that skill and get back to the rushing success he enjoyed in 2018, he could be in line for a massive contract.

While Kamara will once again have to share backfield duties with Latavius Murray, who could cut into his short-yardage and goal-line work, he should receive the bulk of the playing time since he is a favorite weapon of quarterback Drew Brees in the passing game.

The Saints have won the NFC South in each of the past three campaigns, but they have been unable to reach the Super Bowl.

If they have a healthy and productive Kamara in 2020, however, their chances of playing for a championship should increase significantly.