Raekwon McMillan‘s history of contract extensions doubles as one of the more interesting run of transactions in recent NFL history. For the second time, he has agreed to a Patriots extension ahead of a season in which he will not participate.
The Patriots are signing McMillan to another extension, according to Field Yates of ESPN.com (on Twitter). The deal will be worth up to $2.25MM. It comes more than two months after McMillan suffered a season-ending injury during the Pats’ offseason workouts. McMillan went down with a partially torn Achilles in May.
This agreement emerges two years after a similar pact. McMillan suffered a torn ACL during the Pats’ 2021 training camp, but the team still extended him for the 2022 season — via a one-year, $1.27MM deal agreed to in late September of that year. The Patriots-McMillan partnership can be classified as strange, with the team giving the veteran linebacker two contracts after major injuries. But this ensures the Pats are not planning an injury settlement with the former Dolphins draftee. He will be in the picture to return for the 2024 Pats iteration.
McMillan, 27, bounced back from his 2021 ACL tear to play 16 games for the Patriots last season. He operated more as a special-teamer than defensive regular, playing 64% of New England’s ST snaps and 250 total defensive plays. The Ohio State product made 35 tackles (five for loss) and returned a fumble for a score.
McMillan previously worked as a Dolphins starter over the first two seasons of his career, but the Raiders acquired him via trade in 2020. After a season as a part-time Las Vegas starter, McMillan signed a one-year, $1.15MM accord with the Patriots in 2021. He has since agreed to two more Pats pacts.
It cannot exactly be considered a lock McMillan is with the team in 2024. He has now suffered two ACL tears and this partially torn Achilles as a pro. The first of those ACL setbacks occurred during McMillan’s rookie year. The former second-round pick will exit 2023 having missed three full seasons during his seven-year career. But Monday’s agreement ensures the team will give the veteran defender another opportunity.