But James has been around the team and participating in the club’s walk-throughs.
Edge rusher Joey Bosa went through a contract negotiation of his own before the 2020 season, ending up with a five-year $135 million extension. He said on Thursday that he’s been talking to James privately about the situation.
“He’s, I think, doing the right thing,” Bosa said in his press conference. “He obviously deserves whatever he’s going to get. He puts in 100 percent every single day, so he’s just making the best decision for him right now. But the fact that he’s out here coaching the guys, fully involved, 100 percent locked in every day, it obviously means a lot to all of us. And I’m sure the coaches see it and really appreciate it.
“But he’s, obviously, one of the best, if not the best, at his position in the whole league. So I think he’s gonna get what he deserves. He should.”
James had a pair of injury-riddled seasons in 2019 and 2020 after bursting on the scene for an All-Pro rookie season in 2018. But he was healthy in 2021 and became a Pro Bowler for the second time after registering a pair of interceptions, three forced fumbles, 2.0 sacks, and 118 total tackles in 15 games.
Whenever he and the team reach an agreement on a new deal, James could end up as the league’s highest-paid safety.