Teams have until May 3 to exercise fifth-year options on contracts given to first-round picks in 2011 and many teams have already gone ahead and locked up productive players well ahead of the deadline.
It shouldn’t come as much of a surprise after Solder started 44 of the 47 regular season games he’s played for New England over his first three NFL seasons. Solder gives the team a strong player on Tom Brady’s blind side at a reasonable $7.438 million in salary that is only guaranteed for injury while also buying time to work out a longer deal.
With Solder’s option exercised, the Patriots now have both their starting tackles signed through the 2015 season. Assuming right tackle Sebastian Vollmer makes a full recovery from last year’s broken leg, New England is well stocked at tackle for the next two years.