Contract negotiations between Josh Allen and the Buffalo Bills could be approaching their expiration date, though neither side appears to be worried about the final outcome.
For months, the team has been working with Allen on an extension that will lock him down for the long-term, a move that general manager Brandon Beane said was one of the team’s biggest priorities. But as the negotiations have stretched on without any progress to speak of and the team is fast approaching the start of preseason games, there are reports that the talks could be put on the back burner until next year.
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Process Not Moving Forward
Kim Jones of the NFL Network reported this week that the two sides have not been able to move any closer to a deal, suggesting that there may be just close to two weeks left before the entire process is put on hold until sometime early next year.
“No current momentum toward deal. Could change,” she reported. “If on, say, Aug 15 there is still no progress, sides could agree to table until after season.”
Neither side appears to be panicking, Jones noted. Allen remains confident that it is only a matter of time before a deal is finalized, saying at the start of training camp this week that the team’s play is at the front of his mind.
“It’s honestly the least of my worries whether it gets done or not,” Allen said, via The Buffalo News. “We’re here to win a Super Bowl. I can’t focus on those things and feel like I can come out here and feel like I can be the best possible teammate, quarterback I can be. My focus is completely on the field.”
Allen Expected to Land Massive Deal
Most insiders expect that the Bills will make Allen one of the top-paid quarterbacks in the league after his MVP-caliber season in 2020. Allen had an almost unprecedented jump between his second and third seasons, breaking a number of team records while amassing 4,544 passing yards and 37 touchdown passes. The versatile Allen continued to help the team in other ways, adding another eight rushing touchdowns along with a touchdown reception.
Both the Bills and Allen have been quiet about negotiations, leading to speculation about what the details could look like. Some believe that the Bills will choose against a very long-term deal like the one the Kansas City Chiefs gave to Patrick Mahomes. Sportrac predicted that Allen would get something closer to the 4-year, $156 million extension that the Houston Texans gave to Deshaun Watson. The site predicted Allen would get a four-year, $168 million contract with an average annual salary of $42 million and $115 million in guaranteed money.
There have also been suggestions that Allen is willing to work with the team on a deal that would not hurt their ability to remain competitive. ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler reported that Allen had the team’s long-term stability in mind.
“I’m told that Allen loves being in Buffalo enough where he’s willing to structure things, ya know, that helps the team a little bit,” Fowler said, via Bleacher Report. “Certainly, he’s not going to take a discount by any stretch—he’s a top-five quarterback. But he wants them to stay competitive in future years with him in the fold.”