The Saints and Junior Galette have reached an agreement on a four-year contract extension which will keep the standout edge defender under team control through the 2019 season, reports Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (via Twitter). According to Rapoport (via Twitter), the new deal is worth $41.5MM, with $23.5MM in guarantees. We’ll have to wait for further details to find out if that’s all new money, and how much is actually fully guaranteed.
Rand Getlin of Yahoo! Sports first reported yesterday that Galette and the Saints had reached an agreement, but the 26-year-old and his agent quickly shot that down. While the two sides may still have been putting the finishing touches on the agreement, it’s clear that, as we suspected, Getlin was right about the talks becoming serious.
Galette, who inked a three-year deal with the team in March of 2013, technically still had two years remaining on that contract, but New Orleans decided to reward him for a breakout season in which he became a full-time player and recorded 12 sacks. Pro Football Focus’ advanced metrics (subscription required) ranked Galette as the 12th-best 3-4 outside linebacker in the NFL last season, out of 42 qualified players.
As Jason Fitzgerald of Over the Cap details, Galette’s previous deal could have voided after the 2014 season if he recorded 24 total sacks in 2013 and 2014, which further explains why the Saints were interested in getting something done now. If Galette had matched his 2013 production this season, he’d have been eligible to hit the open market in March.