Washington outside linebacker Brian Orakpo wants a long-term deal, but the team has so far given him just the one-year franchise tag, with coach Jay Gruden saying it might make sense for all involved to give Orakpo a year to show what he’s worth on the free market.
But Orakpo says he’s already done everything he has to do to earn that long-term deal. According to the Washington Post, Orakpo bristled at the notion that he has to do anything more to convince the team of his value.
“Oh, I’ve got to prove myself again, huh? I don’t have to prove myself to anybody. I’m already proven in this league,” Orakpo said. “Like I said, I’m here. I have a great relationship with Coach Gruden. I have a great relationship with Bruce Allen, and I have a great relationship with Mr. Snyder, and I’m here. It is what it is. I signed my franchise tag. I’m here. So, play it out, whatever the case may be, I still want something long-term. But I’m not going to be in a situation where I’m holding out, this and that stuff and I’m a distraction and all that comes with it. But I don’t need to prove anything to nobody. That goes for fans, that goes for media, anybody. I’m well proven in this league, and if it doesn’t work out, it doesn’t work out. I don’t have to prove anything to anybody.”
Orakpo is a three-time Pro Bowler who had 10 sacks last season, so it’s easy to see why he thinks he’s already proven what kind of player he is. But while he may be eager to get a long-term contract, the guaranteed base salary of $11.45 million he’ll get this season as Washington’s franchise player is a pretty good deal.