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Cincinnati Bengals, Joe Burrow making progress toward contract extension

Everyone saw the Lamar Jackson contract controversy play out for months with the Baltimore Ravens. Even though Jackson eventually signed an extension, Joe Burrow and the Cincinnati Bengals would like to avoid the same drama.

Burrow has just two more years left on his rookie contract, paying him $5.5 million in 2023 before his salary spikes to $29.5 million playing under the fifth-year team option. But now that Burrow is finally eligible to sign his second contract, both he and the Bengals would like to reach an agreement sooner than later.

Now that the Bengals have wrapped up the NFL draft, they can turn their attention to contract extensions as we see many other teams do this time of year. Which, according to several sources, contract discussions with Burrow are already in the works.

Usually, when a top-ranked QB is up for an extension, we see a new record-breaking dollar amount attached to the dotted line. That’s the same expectation with Burrow. With Lamar Jackson’s five-year, $260 million contract set to pay him an average annual value of $52 per season, that would appear to be the target for Burrow too.

Except, the 26-year-old QB is also keeping his teammates in mind when thinking about his next contract. Burrow realizes whatever deal he signs will have a direct impact on his teammates, and the quality of players the Bengals can afford to bring in.

“You’ve gotta have good players. I mean, it doesn’t matter how good your quarterback is. If you don’t have good players around him, you’re not going to be a good team.”

Joe Burrow on contract talks with Cincinnati Bengals

Related: 12 highest-paid quarterbacks in the NFL: Lamar Jackson sets new mark

What a wise take from the QB set to enter his fourth season in the pros. We routinely hear players talking about sacrificing a bit of extra cash in an effort to build a Super Bowl roster. Rarely do we actually see it once the contract numbers come back.

Whether Burrow and his camp reach for top dollar remains to be seen. But he’s at least aware of the other implications when signing a new contract. But if there’s anyone who knows how quickly a season or even a career can be derailed, it’s Burrow, who tore his ACL just 10 games into his rookie season.

In turn, no one should blame the young gunslinger for raking in as much money as he can possibly make while he’s at his career peak. While the future may look bright right now, nothing in the NFL is guaranteed.

Related: NFL QB rankings: See where Joe Burrow ranks among peers