Teams are generally reluctant to discuss extensions for players who have multiple years remaining on their existing deals because it could encourage other players on the roster to demand a new deal before the club is prepared to give them one. The people introduce the Cardinals as Exhibit “A.”
Arizona recently finalized a two-year extension with star receiver DeAndre Hopkins, even though Hopkins was already under club control for three more seasons. But according to Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports, the team has made no effort to rework Chandler Jones‘ deal, despite Jones’ continued excellence both on and off the field.
Jones is under contract through the 2021 season, but rival execs still believe it’s unusual that the Cardinals have not at least explored an extension. After all, Jones has been arguably the league’s best pass rusher since Arizona acquired him from the Patriots in March 2016, and the 60 sacks that he posted from 2016-19 are eight more than anyone else in the league during that span. The extension he signed in March 2017 will pay him a $16MM salary this year and a $15.5MM salary next season, but those payouts pale in comparison to the $25-$27MM AAVs that players like Joey Bosa and Myles Garrett recently pulled down from their clubs.
Jones, 30, is not the type of player to publicly voice his displeasure, but La Canfora says his contract situation has been “festering” all offseason. The fact that Hopkins got a new deal before ever playing a snap for the Cards certainly didn’t help matters, and it didn’t go unnoticed in the locker room. Though his age may prevent him from getting Bosa or Garrett money, Jones is certainly due for a pay bump, and it will be interesting to see if GM Steve Keim starts thinking about one before the end of the season.
We recently heard that the club has not engaged in any substantive contract talks with cornerback Patrick Peterson, and La Canfora confirms that report. Peterson, though, is playing out his contract year and is eligible for free agency in 2021.
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