Saints, Michael Thomas agree to five-year extension

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Saints wide receiver Michael Thomas is ending his holdout and signing a lucrative new contract.

The Saints and Thomas have agreed to a five-year extension, according to multiple reports.

The reports say the total value of the extension is $100 million, which would give Thomas the $20 million a year he was looking for, but there’s no word on how that $100 million is structured. The value of the guarantee is said to be $61 million, but again, there’s no word on how that “guarantee” actually breaks down.

Thomas is heading into the fourth and final year of his rookie contract and was holding out for a big pay increase. There was little doubt that he deserves it, given that he has 321 catches for 3,787 yards and 23 touchdowns in just three NFL seasons. At age 26, the Saints think Thomas still has plenty of good years left in him, and they want him to spend those years in New Orleans.

60 responses to “Saints, Michael Thomas agree to five-year extension

  1. He’s 26, so is unlikely to be nearly as good in 4-5 years.
    If they paid him more than 18MM/year they got ripped off.
    I can see giving him a bogus contract paying
    18, 18, 20, 22, 22
    where he never sees the last 2 years.
    I’m not sure how you guarantee 61MM,because even with 2019 at close to 1MM, thats 3 years at 20MM, which is too much.

  2. Overkill, very good player but that kind of money for a receiver who has drew brees throwing to him and only averages 1250 yards a season just feels wasted, Brees has had tons of 1000 yard receivers over his career kind of like Peyton Manning.

    Not to say he or they werent good players but being in the right situation in team sports typically makes a much larger difference than just being a slightly better player in terms of production.

  3. He is a crucial part of the team. It had to et done, the Saints have about a two year window that is still open and CGM (Can’t Guard Mike) is a one of the core group of players.

    Now Atlanta can overpay Julio Jones….haha

  4. Nice deal for him. However, Brees is well suited for him. When the QB is gone and probably not to long from now … who will throw him the ball?

  5. Different New Lions says:
    July 31, 2019 at 8:40 am
    Gotta do it. Even if you think it’s too much, this guy is just too valuable to his team…
    ————–
    The trouble is, if you concentrate all your cap into a very small portion of the roster, you lose depth, you lose breadth, you make it easy for a team to double or isolate him and make you try to win with your scrubs – and whenever he’s injured you might as well not bother playing. And with big guarantees you can’t buy-in talent if he is injured – and hamstring your cap for years. And then others want more too or resent it if they are producing or he’s not. In short, it’s a very, very bad idea.

  6. The “extension” averages $20m per year but his actual contract, all 6 years, averages about $17m

  7. Here comes the armchair GMs again to tell us why another elite player doesn’t deserve his elite salary.

    You draft a player who is perfect for your system and he performs well above expectations and is still going to be in his prime for 3-5 years then he has earned his money. You pay the man. Good for him and good for the Saints for rewarding a critical piece of their offense.

  8. Good for him we’ll see what the final #’s actually come out to be but I’m curious how good he will be or should I really say how good this contract will look when Brees retires and a different QB is slinging it to him

  9. Wonderful news for the Panthers, and the rest of the NFC South. As soon as Drew retires, the chant will likely evolve to, “Who dat? Who dat? Who dat say the Saints gonna sign dumb deals?”

  10. naygerkid says:
    July 31, 2019 at 9:09 am
    “extension” averages $20m per year but his actual contract, all 6 years, averages about $17m
    ——————-
    That is flat-out spin, because “extensions” are really just new contracts.

  11. He’s already 26 years old. His prime years are behind him and he’s only in his rookie deal…. the rookie pay scale really needs to be changed to allow players to hit free agency sooner.

  12. Its kind of sad that in such a lucrative sport like Football where the Athletes in order to get properly compensated has to play a game of CHICKEN with their Organizations.

    I think this is just a further indictment of how incompetent and useless their UNION/DeMaurice Smith are.The NFL this past season generated over 15 BILLIONS Dollars.

  13. sfsaintsfan says:
    July 31, 2019 at 9:02 am

    Now Atlanta can overpay Julio Jones….haha

    —————

    Even at 30, Julio >>>>> Michael Thomas

  14. So $11 mil per year over 9 years when all is said and done? Pretty good deal for this level of talent.

  15. He’s arguably the best WR in the league. And he doesn’t get hurt all the time like Julio Jones but he also catches everything he touches. Doesn’t shut his mouth off either like OBJ. All things concedered, he’s the best WR in the game. I’d like all up and coming WR to look to him as the example of how to play the game and how to conduct yourself while playing the game. He’s a professional.

  16. Who cares what they pay MT? Let’s get Julio paid the money he deserves. Go Falcons!

  17. Amari Cooper thinks he deserves this type of cash. Short memory to his stint in Oakland when he either sucked or wasn’t trying….

  18. If drew retires then MT is affordable at this high salary. He could also be traded, or cut. MT is the best possession receiver in the NFL today and with Brees that’s a deadly combination. What happens next year with Kamara is next year, for now the front office has the best team they can field and one that should have been in, and could have won, the Super Bowl last season. The new additions make this team arguably better than last year. Can the division rivals keep up? Doubt it.

    On another note, Julio is going to command more money than MT and that will damage a division rival who still has s prime franchise qb and several top tier receivers to pay. You could argue that this deal hurts Atlanta, but at the same time the pay bands were already pretty obvious.

  19. Fans will like the move but in 2 or 3 years when he loses step this guy won’t be the same player. Just the way it goes in this league.

  20. He’s a great player and he deserves the contract. If he were to hit free agency after this year he would probably get a bigger contract from some other team. The salary cap can be managed if you have someone smart working on it. People who think players aren’t worth the money they make probably root for a team that doesn’t have any players that are worth that kind of money.

  21. I love all the people who don’t have a Michael Thomas or anything close on their team trying to crap on the deal. lol Go keep being mediocre. We got this.

  22. Smart move by the saints, even if he was to regress in his last few seasons of the contract 20M is gonna look so different In 6 years. If he keeps getting better than 20M will be a bargain in 6 years.

  23. The devil will be in the details of this contract, first he is still playing this season on his rookie contract that will only count $1.6 million against the cap. The only known pieces of his contract extension is that it is 5 years, with $61 million guaranteed, $20 million in signing bonuses and $100 million overall. We don’t know what the guarantees are, as some might be fully guaranteed and some might only be against injury. With the $20 million signing bonus we know that will be pro-rated over the 5 years at $4 million per season. Most likely with $20 million outlay of singing bonus this will be a back loaded contract, so I would suspect year 1 will be pretty low $8 million at most, as that puts $28 million in his pocket in the first year. Second and third year salaries will be telling, if it is an escalation contract, like $14 million in year 2, $16 million in year 3, $20 million in year 4 and $22 million in year 5 – then this is truly a 3 year extension worth $58 million. When you include the upcoming season at $1.6 million this becomes a 4 year contract at just under $60 million, with option years in year 5 and 6 at $20 and $22 million . . . if his performance goes down or he starts getting all the little nagging injuries then the Saints will be able to get out of the contract after the 2022/23 season and take only an $8 million dead money cap hit.

    Again the devil is in the details but I would strongly suspect that some of the $61 million is only guaranteed for injury and that the structure is something akin to the above deal. Assume Brees is able to play another 3 years before father time takes over, the Saints are then looking at drafting his successor in the 2021 draft, having him play under Brees for a the final year and then taking over the reigns in 2022/2023 on a team friendly rookie QB salary. The team will then have a season to see how Thomas and the 2nd year QB click and whether it is to the teams advantage to keep Thomas on those out “option” years, which are more easily funded given that the QB salary would be substantially lower to the rookie scale.

  24. realdealsteel says:

    July 31, 2019 at 9:50 am

    He’s arguably the best WR in the league. And he doesn’t get hurt all the time like Julio Jones but he also catches everything he touches. Doesn’t shut his mouth off either like OBJ. All things concedered, he’s the best WR in the game

    ummmm have you never heard of de’andre Hopkins. numbers don’t lie

  25. The Raiders had better get ready for an Antonio Brown implosion. He will not be happy with someone making more money! Let the circus begin!

  26. yourmomgoestocollege87 says:
    July 31, 2019 at 10:49 am
    realdealsteel says:

    July 31, 2019 at 9:50 am

    He’s arguably the best WR in the league. And he doesn’t get hurt all the time like Julio Jones but he also catches everything he touches. Doesn’t shut his mouth off either like OBJ. All things concedered, he’s the best WR in the game

    ummmm have you never heard of de’andre Hopkins. numbers don’t lie
    ==================================

    They said ARGUABLY.

    Hopkins is amazing…as is Thomas, as is Julio etc. You really can’t go wrong.

  27. Everyone complaining about it being too much money isn’t thinking in the full term of the contract, which is over 5 more years – AFTER this year, making it effectively a 6 year contract. What seems expensive now won’t be expensive in just a couple years where 20 mil becomes the average for WR’s. They’re getting ahead of the rising cost and taking advantage of approaching cap increases. Thomas is happy now and won’t have any reason to complain once his contract starts falling to the normal rate as either his production continues or decreases.

    Who was it above that said he’s not worth this money with his production? Sorry but over 100 catches a year is worth that production.

  28. packers291 says:
    July 31, 2019 at 9:33 am
    He’s already 26 years old. His prime years are behind him and he’s only in his rookie deal…. the rookie pay scale really needs to be changed to allow players to hit free agency sooner.
    —————————————————————————-
    Just because the Packers don’t respect their receivers and show them no loyalty and drops them before their prime years are over doesn’t mean that’s the right way to do it. At 26 most players are just hitting their Prime. Most wide receivers especially don’t even start hitting their potential until year 3. He can still have another 3-4 years as an elite starters – see Julio Jones. After that he can still serve as a respected vet in the #2 or 3 spot.

  29. Well they had no choice but to pay the man. With that said things get interesting from here on out. Now the cap really comes into play the following season. They have to absorb almost 16 million for Brees next year when he probably will not even play. Almost the entire defensive secondary are free agents next year with the exception of Lattimore, who more than likely will be a holdout just as well next year. You can almost think Ryan Ramzyck will also want to be paid as well next year and could be a hold out. Add that AJ Klien, and Andrus Peat are UFA…really puts them in a squeeze. Even if Thomas counts for only 15 million next year, it only leaves the saints with about 20 million in cap space, and that without a QB on the roster since all assume this is Bree’s last year, and Teddy Bridgewater is a UFA next year as well….Long story short, Saints all in this year…Lombardi or Bust!

  30. Wonderful news for the Panthers, and the rest of the NFC South. As soon as Drew retires, the chant will likely evolve to, “Who dat? Who dat? Who dat say the Saints gonna sign dumb deals?”

    —————————

    Any fans of a team that trots out a joke of a QB like Newton year after year have no room to laugh at “dumb decisions” of other teams.

  31. When Brees is gone and Thomas is struggling to get 1000 yards a season this contract will look horrendous.

  32. Damn good WR but those numbers in that NFCCG game last year was pathetic.
    =======================
    The California refs allowed him to get mugged all game

  33. streetyson says:
    July 31, 2019 at 9:23 am
    naygerkid says:
    July 31, 2019 at 9:09 am
    “extension” averages $20m per year but his actual contract, all 6 years, averages about $17m
    ——————-
    That is flat-out spin, because “extensions” are really just new contracts.
    ——————
    Yes, new contracts…that extend off of the current contract. And the cap from the signing bonus is spread across all 6 of the years.

  34. jlbay says:
    July 31, 2019 at 10:26 am
    Assume Brees is able to play another 3 years before father time takes over,
    – – – – – – – – – – – – – – —
    In the NFL there is a common statement about being on the wrong side of 30, don’t hear much about being on the wrong side of 40 where Brees is today. 3 years from now…lol

  35. Not worth it? 1200 yards a season and 7 touchdowns a season ( that’s rounding down ) Considering he isn’t the only WR on the team and they had backs that could catch, I’d say those great numbers are well, great. Any other team in the NFL that didn’t have a Hopkins or a Beckham would pay more for a player of his caliber. Brees probably only has two good years left max so having Thomas around and still young for the next generation is going to be vital for the team. Besides, it is no secret the Saints are in win now mode and you do things like this in win now mode.

  36. Awesome. They are paying him for two pro bowl seasons that he was grossly underpaid based on production & the rookie salary scale. And trusting he can deliver maybe 3 more elite seasons. How is this deal not fair or deserved? Also sets the floor for Julio’s deal….a rival will have to at least pay similar money.

  37. wow 20 mill a year. Coopers agent just got a woody and Jerry just peed himself a little.

  38. Are there any real football fans in here . This doesn’t even matter the only way he sees that money is IF he’s healthy and or producing.

  39. It’ll be more interesting when Brees isn’t there if he can produce at a high level. Ask every receiver who left or was left when Peyton Manning left.

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