In the wake of Andy Dalton‘s contract extension, Alex Smith and the Chiefs have reopened their own extension talks, writes Tom Pelissero of USA Today. Dalton’s six-year, $115MM extension could have served as the baseline for Smith’s deal, although the 30-year old former first-overall pick might have been in line for a shorter deal. In terms of annual salary, Smith’s value is similar to Dalton’s.
Smith is now on the record saying he would not accept a similar deal. The major reason he would resist is the ability for the Bengals to get out from under the contract each year.
While these deals may make sense for the younger players who are betting on themselves, the older Smith knows this could be his last big contract. If it does not work out with the Chiefs on a pay-as-you-go structure, it is likely one-year deals as a backup the rest of his career. Smith is looking for enough guarantees to keep him in Kansas City for the long haul.
“I want to get something that’s right that I’m going to play out,” said Smith. “Absolutely, and that’s definitely a focus of mine.”
Smith also addressed the contracts signed by Dalton and Kaepernick directly, noting the differences between their situations and his.
“I look at both Andy and Kap and they’re both on their rookie deals,” said Smith. “They’re both second-round picks in the new rookie wage scale, so what were their salaries? It’s a very different situation for me.”
Due to the rookie wage scale, both of those players were set to make a little over $1MM this season. Their deals significantly increased their 2014 salaries, but because of the short term raises the teams were able to grab long term control. Smith was scheduled to make $7.5MM next season, and would be less inclined to sacrifice control long term for a raise in 2014.
While contract talks have been complicated, Smith still hopes the two sides could reach an agreement before the beginning of the regular season.