The Detroit Lions have a few key extensions to be decided on in the short term, and Kenny Golladay might be the most important move they make for the future.
Thus far in his career, the wideout has been a budding star and has certainly earned the right to stick around in the Motor City on a new deal. Clearly, that’s something the wideout thinks he wants to do as well. Speaking with the media, Golladay said he is hopeful something can get done relatively soon.
Golladay largely punts on contract questions, but said he wants to be here and he's hopeful of something gets done before the season.
— Justin Rogers (@Justin_Rogers) August 17, 2020
“As of right now, I can only control what I can control. I want to be here. Really, I’m just going to let my agent and the front office take care of that. I’m pretty sure something will get done (before the season), hopefully.”
That’s a strong statement for Golladay to make, and while it’s down the middle to an extent, it’s clear that the wideout does want to stick around with the team that drafted him and get a deal done in the near future.
As for where the team’s at, mum remains the word from their perspective. When Bob Quinn spoke ahead of camp, he didn’t provide any updates as to where the Lions were progressing in terms of deals. It’s a safe bet to assume they’ve at least thought about an extension and talked about parameters, however. That is due to Golladay’s massive talent.
Regardless, it’s nice to see the wideout talking about staying and wanting to stay.
Kenny Golladay’s New Contract Projection
Outside of projections from sites like Spotrac.com, there’s been little real insight on the structure of such a deal lately. Recently, Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press caught up with Joel Corry, a CBS Sports cap analyst to ask him for a hint as to what a new Golladay deal would look like.
Corry’s answer? It’s going to be much bigger, but probably won’t re-set the market at wide receiver. Here’s a look at Corry’s conclusion from Birkett’ piece:
“Corry said Golladay’s final contract could end up in the $18 million-per-season range, which would slot him behind Jones, Cooper and Thomas among highest-paid receivers. The Lions gave defensive end Trey Flowers a five-year, $90 million deal in free agency last spring, with $50 million in practical guarantees, that could provide the structure for that type of deal.
As for any financial crunch the Lions could be facing from pandemic-related losses, Corry said that’s no excuse for the team to scrimp on a deal.
“Let’s put it this way, (giving Golladay a huge contract) will be less cumbersome than when they did Calvin Johnson’s deal on a flat cap (in 2012) and the cap went from $123.75 to $120.6 that year and they had a high-priced Ndamukong Suh on a rookie contract and a Matthew Stafford as well,” he said. “This situation isn’t that one. There are ways to work around that.”
Gollday has long been expected to be the next Lions wideout to get a deal done, and he is projected to have a monster season on the field for the team as part of a revved-up offensive attack. There is no question the Lions have to get a deal done and want to as well. A number like this likely wouldn’t give them much of a problem.
Around $18 million a season would seem to be a small price for the team to pay for Golladay’s emerging game breaking ability at wideout. In the end, that could be just what the Lions have to shell out in order to keep their star in the mix.
Kenny Golladay’s 2019 Stats
From nearly the start of the season until the finish, Golladay had an excellent year catching the ball. He put up 1,190 yards and 11 touchdowns. He had some huge games last season and his ball skills are a big reason why.
In total, Golladay has enjoyed arguably the best start to a career of any wideout in his 2017 draft class not named JuJu Smith-Schuster. With 2,730 yards and 19 touchdowns thus far in his career coming into the 2020 season on the field, Golladay looks like an obvious top dog in Detroit for the foreseeable future with Matthew Stafford tossing him the rock. That’s good news for the Lions, who have long pondered how to find production at the wideout position minus Calvin Johnson. Not an issue anymore with Golladay taking over.
That’s production Golladay wants to keep seeing in Detroit, and hopefully, the sides can come to an agreement before the season.