The Detroit Lions have extended one key member of their offensive line on Tuedsay. According to his agency, left tackle Taylor Decker has signed a six-year deal worth $85 million with $37.5 million guaranteed. The average per year of $14.2 million places him just inside the top 10 of all NFL tackles, between the Falcons’ Jake Matthews ($14.5M) and Browns’ Jack Conklin ($14M).
Decker was drafted by the Lions in the first round of the 2016 NFL Draft. In his four years with the Lions, Decker has started in 55 of 64 possible games, missing eight games in 2017 due to torn labrum.
As Decker’s career has gone on, he’s settled in nicely as the team’s franchise left tackle. Towards the end of the 2019 season, he was one of PFF’s highest-rated tackles in football. In the final 10 weeks of the season, only five tackles graded out higher than Decker.
Decker’s extension comes just a few weeks after the Bills signed Dion Dawkins to a four-year, $50 million extension. While Decker’s deal comes out to less per year, the long-term assurance is likely priceless.
This extension is actually a better deal than the projection Over The Cap’s Brad Spielberger gave us a couple weeks ago:
“I think five-year, $80 million with around $35-$40 million guaranteed at signing is a fair deal for both parties.”
The Lions have yet to announce the deal.
UPDATE: Justin Rogers of the Detroit News provides a little more clarity on the contract. It’s technically a five-year extension, with a voided year at the end—so, in essence, a four-year extension.
More on Decker's deal. The numbers out there are a bit inflated. It's essentially a four-year extension. Includes a voidable year at the end to ease year-to-year cap hit. That's where the six years come from.— Justin Rogers (@Justin_Rogers) September 1, 2020
UPDATE 2: In terms of new money, the deal is actually more like a four-year, $60 million deal, which is right in line with that $15 million/year average that Spielberger predicted.
The #Lions are giving LT Taylor Decker a 4-year extension worth $60M in new money, source said. In all, he’s under contract for 5 years with the last year voidable for cap reasons. A nice payday for Decker.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) September 1, 2020
UPDATE 3: Rapoport followed it up with more details.
Details, including $$ already on books:— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) September 1, 2020
— $7.5M signing bonus, paid out in 17 installments in 2020.
— $6.85M salary in 2020.
— $13M fully gtd in 2021.
— $14.75M fully gtd in 2022.
— $13.7M in 2023.
— $12.95M in 2024.
— $250K workout bonuses in ’22-24
— $500K roster bonus in 2024. https://t.co/0nmlmzgvfx