After the Patriots shipped Jamie Collins to the Browns, it was widely reported that the team’s unsuccessful contract talks helped to spur the deal. According to one report, Collins’ camp once told the Patriots that they were seeking “Von Miller money.” In a chat with reporters today, Collins denied setting his asking price that high.
“I’m not Von Miller. Let’s be smart,” Collins said (Twitter link via Mary Kay Cabot of Cleveland.com).
Collins also denied rumblings of an $11MM/year contract offer from the Pats (Twitter link). However, as noted yesterday, it sounds like a matter of semantics. The Patriots apparently floated that number in talks, but never formally put such an offer on the table.
The details of Collins’ talks with the Patriots are largely irrelevant now, but it does give us insight into where his team may kick things off in negotiations. The Browns obviously want to lock Collins up for future seasons and they now know that they won’t have to work his reps down from a ludicrously high six-year, $114.5MM starting point. Yesterday, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com heard that Collins does want to top Luke Kuechly‘s $12.36MM/year average, which is a more realistic target. Kuechly signed his deal with the Panthers prior to the 2015 season and the cap/market increase may allow Collins to leapfrog him, depending on how he performs for the rest of the season.
Collins also said he feels he’s auditioning for the 31 other teams, considering he’s out of contract after this season. At the same time, he said that he “wasn’t worried” about joining the winless Browns and is putting his focus on thriving with his new team.
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.