Report: Curtis Samuel, Washington Football Team Agree to 3-Year, $34.5M Contract

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistMarch 18, 2021

Carolina Panthers wide receiver Curtis Samuel runs up field during the second half of an NFL football game against the Minnesota Vikings, Sunday, Nov. 29, 2020, in Minneapolis. (AP Photo/Bruce Kluckhohn)
Bruce Kluckhohn/Associated Press

Curtis Samuel is reportedly heading to the second team of his NFL career.

The Washington Football Team signed the wide receiver to a three-year, $34.5 million contract on Wednesday, per ESPN's Adam Schefter.

This move means Samuel will pair up with former Ohio State teammate Terry McLaurin to anchor Washington's receiving corps:

Terry McLaurin @TheTerry_25

We really talked about this in the dorms freshman year🔥

Terry McLaurin @TheTerry_25

Oh it’s lit!!🔥 @CurtisSamuel4__ https://t.co/HnVNxjH54C

Ben Standig @BenStandig

From @TheTerry_25's IG. Same recruiting class at Ohio State, now teammates in the NFL. https://t.co/53fsdKGcVt

Samuel spent the first four seasons of his career with the Carolina Panthers after they selected him with a second-round pick in the 2017 NFL draft. While he wasn't an immediate difference-maker, he improved every season until he was one of the team's go-to options in 2020.

The Ohio State product had just 115 receiving yards as a rookie but improved that total to 494 in his second season, 627 in his third and 851 last year.

Samuel is also a running threat and tallied 200 yards and two touchdowns on the ground during the 2020 campaign.

"He doesn't say very much, doesn't complain, doesn't make excuses; he's just got a tough mindset," Panthers head coach Matt Rhule said of Samuel during the 2020 campaign, per Alaina Getzenberg of the Charlotte Observer. "And he does whatever needs to be done. You can coach him. If he says something to me, I listen. I have a lot of respect for him. He's so versatile, to be able ... to have someone who can run and catch and get open and block, to do it at his level might be rare, and it's a lot of credit to him." 

That type of praise from a head coach is notable, especially for someone who is just 24 years old and coming off the best season of his career.

If Samuel continues on that path of improvement, this will be one of the best under-the-radar signings of the entire offseason. He is someone who can slide right into Washington's receiver rotation and challenge cornerbacks on deep balls, run underneath routes and work as a ball-carrier when needed. 

That type of skill set can help Washington compete for a playoff berth, which would be just the second of Samuel's career.