All-Pro Michael Thomas and the New Orleans Saints agreed to a five-year, $100 million contract with a $20 million signing bonus that will make him the league’s highest-paid wide receiver.
According to multiple reports, the deal includes $61 million in guaranteed money.
Thomas will earn $1.1 million in the final year of his rookie contract in 2019, and the extension will lock him up with the Saints through the 2024 season. He did not report to training camp while awaiting a new deal.
The Saints drafted Thomas, an Ohio State product, in the second round of the 2016 NFL Draft.
—With Dak Prescott, Ezekiel Elliott and Amari Cooper all seeking new contracts, Cowboys vice president Stephen Jones voiced the team’s reluctance to pay top-tier money.
“They want to see the market,” Jones said of the trio. “We can’t push the issue unless we want to be a market-setter. And we’re damn sure not going to be a market-setter, because of all the things that go with being a Dallas Cowboy.
“We want to be fair. We want our players to feel good about their contract. But at the same time, we don’t want to do things that are out of line because we can’t afford to be that way. ... When we save money — whether it’s with Dak, whether it’s with Zeke, whether it’s with Amari — it’s not saving (owner) Jerry (Jones) and I a dollar. It’s just money that’s going to go to another player. ...We’re very convicted that we’re going to get these deals done.”
—Days before his 42nd birthday, New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady said he’d be open to discussing a new contract entering the last year of his deal.
“Have I earned it?” Brady asked rhetorically to reporters. “I don’t know. That’s up for talk show debate. What do you guys think? Should we take a poll? Talk for Mr. Kraft. No, like I said, we got a great relationship so we’ll see how it goes.”
“None of us are really promised anything,” he added. “I am trying to do the best I can do today and let those things work themselves out.”
—The Washington Redskins reportedly are discussing the possibility of trading holdout Pro Bowl left tackle Trent Williams, and the Patriots could be a potential landing spot.
Jeff Howe of The Athletic reported that while it’s “unclear what type of compensation” the Redskins could be seeking, there’s “a feeling around the league the Patriots would be involved.”
Newly signed Donald Penn told reporters he joined Washington for a chance to start at left tackle. He added he spoke to Williams before signing, but said he’d prefer to keep that discussion private.
—Nick Buoniconti, a Pro Football Hall of Fame linebacker and part of the undefeated 1972 Miami Dolphins, died Tuesday night, his family announced. He was 78.
Buoniconti struggled with dementia and was admitted to hospice care this week. He said in 2017 he was convinced that the degenerative brain disease CTE caused by hits to his head while playing football had “taken my life away,” and he arranged to donate his brain to science.
—Buffalo Bills center Mitch Morse, who signed a record four-year, $44.5 million deal in March, is in concussion protocol.
He suffered a concussion Saturday, but his symptoms surfaced later. The concussion was diagnosed Tuesday and announced Wednesday by coach Sean McDermott.
—Atlanta Falcons rookie offensive lineman Kaleb McGary was scheduled to undergo cardiac ablation, a procedure designed to correct heart rhythm issues.
The team said McGary, drafted 31st overall, has had two similar procedures, which are considered minimally invasive, in the past. No timeline for his return has been disclosed.
—The Baltimore Ravens waived 2018 fifth-round pick Jordan Lasley, a day after the wideout reportedly got into a fight at practice and threw a football into a pond.
Lasley was taken at No. 162 overall last year. He made the 53-man roster but did not play in a game.
—The Miami Dolphins activated tight end Dwayne Allen from the physically unable to perform list.
Allen missed the start of camp with an undisclosed injury. He joined the Dolphins on a two-year, $7 million deal in March.
—The Houston Texans activated rookie tight end Kahale Warring from the active/non-football injury list.
A third-round pick, Warring is expected to compete for a prominent rookie role.
—The Tennessee Titans placed wide receiver Cameron Batson on injured reserve with an undisclosed injury.
Batson was injured Monday when he landed on his left shoulder during drills.
—The Kansas City Chiefs are experimenting with moving cornerback Tremon Smith to running back.
A sixth-round pick in 2018, Smith returned 33 kicks for 886 yards as a rookie. He played 74 snaps on defense in 14 games, breaking up one pass.
—Field Level Media