Bills Breakout TE Sends Strong Message After Signing $53 Million Extension

Dawson Knox

Getty Dawson Knox #88 of the Buffalo Bills reacts after a touchdown during the first quarter in the game against the New Orleans Saints at Caesars Superdome on November 25, 2021 in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Just one day before the Buffalo Bills take on the Los Angeles Rams for NFL’s season opener on Thursday Night Football, the franchise locked up one of their biggest breakout stars from last year, tight end Dawson Knox, to a massive contract extension.

Last season, the Bills’ third-round pick in 2019, was on the field for 76.5% of the team’s offensive snaps and caught 49 receptions for 587 yards with nine touchdowns. NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo reported on Wednesday, September 7, “Knox gets a four-year, $53.6 million extension with over $31 million guaranteed.”

The Ole Miss alum’s salary extension makes him one of the Top-5 highest-paid tight ends in the league. Knox sent a strong message to fans after the news broke. He tweeted “Couldn’t be more excited to call Buffalo home for the next several years. Huge thank you to the Pegulas and Brandon Beane… now it’s time to get this season rollin!! Go Bills 🔴🔵 #BillsMafia.”

Knox’s 2022 base salary is $2.5 million, and if the Bills didn’t sign him to an extension, he would’ve become an unrestricted free agent in 2023. According to, he was projected to earn a four-year, $50 million extension, which would bump his annual base salary to an average of $12.3 million, so the Bills’ offer fell right on target.

Knox told reporters on Wednesday that he was “very excited” about the new deal, per The Buffalo News reporter Katherine Fitzgerald. “I love the city of Buffalo. It couldn’t be a better football city. I fell in love with the fans, with just the culture here. I knew I wanted to be here for as long as I possibly could be. So, I couldn’t be more excited to lock this deal in.”

The 25-year-old tight end, who recently mourned the heartbreaking death of his little brother, Luke Knox, dedicated his extension to him. “I do believe that he’s up in heaven right and he couldn’t be happier that this is done… he’s smiling down, couldn’t be more excited. So this if for him, too.”

Knox Made It Clear He Wanted to Stay in Buffalo

On Day 2 of training camp at St. John Fisher College on July 25, Knox commented on his contract situation. The 6-foot-4 tight end noted he’d recently purchased a new home in Western New York and that he’d like to remain in Buffalo.

“I want to be here. I bought a house here a few months ago, not because I want to be gone in a year,” Knox said. “So, I want to be here as long as I can, but I know a lot of that stuff is out of my hands with salary cap. I try not to read into all that too much, but I’ve definitely communicated that I want to be here for an extended amount of time, so whether that’s getting the extension now or later, I definitely hope that happens.”

Knox plunked down $995,000 for a three-bedroom house at 3350 Angle Road in Orchard Park, just a 10-minute drive from Highmark Stadium — a bold move for someone who didn’t have a guarantee they’d be part of the team next season.

On the flip side, Knox purchasing the home in the first place could’ve been a hint that he knew an extension was just around the corner.

Knox’s new house looks gorgeous based on the photos shared by In addition to nearly 4,000 square feet of living space, the property sits on 6 acres of land with a saltwater pool in the backyard and a heart-shaped pond in the front yard. A separate three-car garage with an upstairs living space sits next to the main house, and there are two statues of buffaloes, natch, near the driveway.

Knox Was One of Several Key Players Looking for an Extension This Season, Including Safety Jordan Poyer & More

Brandon Beane

GettyBrandon Beane, general manager of the Buffalo Bills speaks to reporters at the NFL combine in Indianapolis.

Bills general manager Brandon Beane has some tough decisions to make when it comes to deciding which players he’ll keep after the 2022 season, especially since quarterback Josh Allen’s salary comes with a $39.7 million cap hit in 2023, per, Stefon Diggs’ new extension comes with an approximately $20.3 million hit, and Von Miller’s deal depletes another $18.7 million.

Aside from Knox, Jordan Poyer, Devin Singletary and Tremaine Edmunds are entering the final year of their respective contracts.

Back on April 22, Beane discussed the difficult situation of having so many worth players due for an extension at the same time, reported The Athletic‘s Joe Buscaglia:

“Yeah, I mean, it’s hard. There’s other guys here that want to be paid, too… I want to pay ’em all — the ones that deserve it and have earned it,” Beane said. “There’s other guys here that I feel have earned it as well, and want to do it. There’s guys that have left here since I’ve been here that I’ve wanted to pay, or our organization has wanted to pay, but you can’t pay them all, to the point of your question. And that’s hard because I’m a people person. I love these guys and love ’em to death, but I also have a job to do and have rules to follow. From a cap standpoint and cash. Unfortunately, you have to say goodbye to some.”

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