The Eagles know how valuable Lane Johnson is to their success. That’s why they are paving the lane with a wheelbarrow full of guaranteed money.
According to NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo, the Eagles have agreed to a four-year, $72 million contract extension with their starting right tackle. The deal includes $54.595 million in guaranteed money and it’s the largest contract for an NFL offensive lineman in history on a “per-year and guarantee basis.”
Johnson has long taken jabs at critics on social media for overlooking him when compiling lists of the best offensive tackles in football. The Eagles obviously felt differently and rewarded him with a top-level contract. The deal was confirmed by the Eagles on Twitter and keeps Johnson in midnight green through 2025.
Last week, the Eagles announced they had signed right guard Brandon Brooks to a $56.2 million contract extension. That deal keeps Brooks in Philadelphia through 2024 and ensures the right side of the Eagles’ offensive line is going to be good for a very long time.
“It’s smart. They know what they’re doing,” Johnson told the team’s official website after inking his contract. “Ultimately, they want to build a good football team for a long time and core players is where it starts. It’s a blessing being around a lot of great people every day. It’s a lot of fun.”
Carson Wentz Much Better QB with Johnson Protecting Him
Needless to say, the Eagles have struggled with Lane Johnson out of the lineup.
When the right tackle left the game against New England, the offense stalled and the line struggled to protect Carson Wentz. The same thing happened last week versus Seattle. Luckily, he’s cleared the concussion protocol.
In fact, the Eagles have given up a combined eight sacks in back-to-back losses with Johnson out of the lineup. The Eagles tried to move rookie Andre Dillard over to right tackle but the experiment failed miserably. They are overjoyed to have their stud “lane-paver” back.
As The Inquirer’s Jeff McLane pointed out, Wentz’s passer rating is nearly 20 points better with Johnson on the field: 97.9 versus 79.0. The contract will be Johnson’s third with the organization after they made him the fourth overall selection in the 2013 NFL Draft. There have been no regrets on either side.
“There just aren’t any better than Lane,” offensive line coach Jeff Stoutland said. “He works hard at being the best in the business. He takes pride in his profession. It means something to him.”
Johnson Fought Through Serious Injury in 2018
Lane Johnson may have had an “off year” by his standards in 2018, but the 29-year-old was still a force to be reckoned with and stabilizing force. He graded out nicely in Pro Football Focus’ end-of-year rankings, cracking the Top 25 after not allowing a single pressure in two of his last four games.
More impressively, he battled a Grade 2 MCL tear and high ankle sprain in his left leg for a good chunk of the season and was just trying to get to the finish line. Johnson wouldn’t blame the injuries for his performance, but it certainly put him at less than 100-percent.
“That’s the game,” Johnson told reporters, via NBC Sports Philadelphia. “The only thing that counts is I just wanted to be there for my team. Sometimes you win some, sometimes you lose. Obviously, there are some plays you’d like to have back, but moving forward is the best you can do.”
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