DeAndre Hopkins, Julio Jones, NFL's Top-Paid WRs After Cardinals WR's Contract

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistSeptember 8, 2020

Arizona Cardinals wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins makes a catch as receivers run drills during an NFL football workout Wednesday, Aug. 12, 2020, in Glendale, Ariz. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)
Ross D. Franklin/Associated Press

DeAndre Hopkins has been arguably the NFL's best wide receiver since entering the league in 2013, so it's only appropriate that his contract reflects his production. 

Per NFL Network's Ian Rapoport, the Arizona Cardinals made Hopkins the highest-paid non-quarterback in NFL history by agreeing to terms on a two-year extension worth up to $54.5 million, including $42.75 million guaranteed at signing. 

As noted by ESPN's Adam Schefter, Hopkins is now tied to the Cardinals for five years and will earn $18.8 million per season:

Hopkins' $94 million in total salary ranks third among all wideouts, behind Amari Cooper of the Dallas Cowboys ($100 million) and Michael Thomas of the New Orleans Saints ($96.25 million). 

By average annual salary, Hopkins' $27.25 million on the two-year extension is more than $5 million ahead of the No. 2 receiver (Julio Jones of the Atlanta Falcons: $22 million). 

Jones' $64 million guaranteed at signing is, by far, the most among all receivers. Hopkins, Odell Beckham Jr. ($40.96 mllion) and Amari Cooper ($40 million) are the only players at the position within $25 million of the Falcons star. 

When the Houston Texans traded Hopkins to Arizona in March, head coach Bill O'Brien told reporters the move was done "in the best interest of our team" because the four-time Pro Bowler "had three years left on his deal and he wanted a raise."

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The Cardinals, who gave up David Johnson and two draft picks in the trade, were willing to give Hopkins the deal he was seeking. 

Hopkins has never had fewer than 802 receiving yards in a season in his seven-year career. He has recorded at least 1,100 yards in each of the past three seasons and has 31 touchdowns during that span.