Dolphins in Agreement With Waddle on Deal to Be Top-5 Highest Paid WR: Report

Jaylen Waddle, Miami Dolphins

Getty Jaylen Waddle walking off of the field.

The Miami Dolphins have reached an extension agreement with Jaylen Waddle, according to Adam Schefter of ESPN.

“This just in: Miami and WR Jaylen Waddle reached agreement today on a three-year, $84.75 million contract extension that includes $76 million guaranteed, per sources,” Schefter tweeted on May 30. “The deal makes Waddle one of the league’s top five highest-paid receivers.”

The Dolphins have anticipated Waddle, 25, becoming the team’s top receiver in the future, according to The Athletic’s Mike Jones.

“Keeping Waddle for the long term has been a priority for the Dolphins, whose offense ranks among the most prolific in the league thanks largely to the wideout tandem of Waddle and Hill,” Jones wrote. “But team officials have seen Waddle’s ascension to the No. 1 role coming and have now rewarded him.”

That Waddle, the No. 6 pick out of Alabama in 2021, received an extension before quarterback Tua Tagovailoa came as somewhat of a surprise in light of a May 29 report from USA Today that the Dolphins hoped to sign Tagovailoa first.

But Sports Illustrated’s Alain Poupart suggested on May 29 that the Dolphins are under little pressure to extend Tagovailoa because he’s under contract for one more season and “they could always use the franchise tag next spring.”

Miami Dolphins General Manager Hinted at Keeping Jaylen Waddle Around at NFL Scouting Combine

There were questions about what the Dolphins were going to do on a potential Waddle contract, but the extension agreement has answered them. General manager Chris Grier also spoke at the NFL Scouting Combine about Waddle’s future with the Dolphins.

“I said in the middle of the season, I have no thoughts of trading Jaylen Waddle,” Grier told reporters. “We want him here for a long time, and we think he’s a big part of our now and our future here. He’s a great person on and off the field, and we still think as good as he is, he still has runway to keep getting better.”

Though the contract extension makes him one of the highest paid receivers, the distinction might be short-lived, according to Pro Football Talk’s Mike Florio.

“It won’t last long, not with Justin Jefferson likely getting a new deal before training camp (if not sooner), with Ja’Marr Chase up after that, and with Tyreek Hill likely to get an adjustment of his own,” Florio wrote on May 30.

Cooper Kupp, DeVonta Smith, Nico Collins, and others are all being paid around similar value, ranging from $72.7 million to $80 million.

This Contract Makes Sense for the Dolphins

In his first three seasons with the Dolphins, he’s had over 1,000 yards per season, including in 2022, when he finished with 1,356 yards despite Tagovailoa’s missing four games. He was the first Dolphin in team history to start his career with three straight 1,000-yard seasons.

Tyreek Hill has been the focus of the Dolphins’ offense over the past two years, and Waddle’s presence has only given Hill more opportunities.

Hill tweeted his reaction to the news on May 30, writing “couldn’t be more happier” and punctuating it with a relieved face emoji.

The Dolphins hope Waddle will help the team win their first playoff game since the 2000 season.

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