Many of the highest paid NFL players in 2022 are wide receivers, something Washington Commanders wideout Terry McLaurin notices. While the 26-year-old wants a new deal, he might be waiting a while for something to happen.
Th2 2022 offseason has dramatically changed the market for receivers. It started with the Christian Kirk contract, sparking a wave of All-Pro talents – Davante Adams and Tyreek Hill – being traded with their former teams choosing to find more affordable weapons.
With AJ Brown traded and DK Metcalf committed to the Seattle Seahawks, the spotlight has shifted to McLaurin. A third-round pick in the 2019 NFL Draft, the 6-foot receiver is entering the last year of his rookie deal before becoming eligible for free agency.
- Terry McLaurin contract: $2.79 million salary (2022), 2023 free agent
The offseason would seemingly be the perfect time to negotiate a new contract. Both the club and player likely will be focused on games when the regular season arrives, limiting time to negotiate a new deal. Washington also likely wants to avoid having to rely on the franchise tag next spring, but it seems like that might become its only option.
Albert Breer wrote for Sports Illustrated that negotiations between McLaurin and the Commanders haven’t really started. As of now, a contract extension is “nowhere” near happening and there is a strong belief the organization is losing a lot of ground.
- Terry McLaurin stats (career): 222 receptions, 3,090 receiving yards and 16 touchdowns
After paying a lot to acquire quarterback Carson Wentz this offseason, Washington seemed to be taking an aggressive approach for the 2022 season. However, a lack of contract talks between the organization and its most important skill player on offense is concerning.
Applying the franchise tag on McLaurin a year from now would be risky. It prevents him from hitting the open market, creating friction with the organization. Given Wentz’s level of play in the past two seasons, McLaurin also likely won’t be pleased with the offense or quarterback play.
For now, the Commanders have a No. 1 wide receiver who can be the center of this passing attack. if the franchise isn’t careful, though, it could risk heading into next offseason with a disgruntled star who wants to play for anyone but the Commanders.