The Denver Broncos have now joined the Dallas Cowboys in locking up their star receiver prior to the 4 p.m. ET Wednesday deadline. And it’s the near exact same deal.
According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, Denver has inked Thomas to a five-year, $70 million contract with $43.5 million guaranteed. This comes mere minutes after the Cowboys signed Dez Bryant to the same five-year, $70 million contract. Though, Bryant received $45 million guaranteed.
As Wednesday started to unfold around the football world, it looked like Thomas wouldn’t be receiving the long-term security that he had sought:
Barring a significant turn, a long-term deal is not expected for the #Broncos & star WR Demaryius Thomas. When will they see him next?
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) July 15, 2015
That all changed on a dime when Bryant received his long-term deal earlier on Wednesday.
By virtue of signing the five-year contract, Thomas joins Bryant as the second highest-paid receiver in the NFL in terms of annual average and total value. He’s third behind Calvin Johnson and Bryant when it comes to guaranteed cash.
This should quiet the collusion charges that the NFL Players Association threw the Broncos and Cowboys way stemming from alleged conversations the two sides had regarding the contracts of their star receivers. Though, the common sense factor here suggests that collusion surely did take place. It will be interesting to see how the union and the NFL handles that aspect considering both situations are now resolved.
Thomas, 27, has been among the best receivers in the NFL since Peyton Manning joined the Broncos. He’s tallied nearly 300 receptions for over 4,400 yards and 35 touchdowns since the start of the 2012 season.
Photo: USA Today Sports