The Cleveland Browns are making Myles Garrett the NFL’s best-compensated defensive player.
The 24-year-old pass rusher is close to signing a five-year, $125 million extension that will tie him to the franchise through the 2026 season, a person familiar with negotiations confirmed to USA TODAY Sports’ Nate Ulrich. The person requested anonymity because the new deal had not yet been finalized.
Garrett will average $25 million annually once the extension kicks in, a figure that would surpass Chicago Bears pass rusher Khalil Mack, whose current intake per season is $23.5 million.
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It’s the league’s latest landmark deal in a year when Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes signed an extension that could ultimately pay him more than a half-billion dollars over the life of the deal. Earlier in 2020, Carolina Panthers all-pro Christian McCaffrey reset the running back pay scale with a four-year, $64 million extension.
And yet many other players are standing by, struggling to negotiate new deals at a time when teams generally seem reluctant to grant them given the uncertainty of the COVID-19 pandemic and how it might affect league revenue and future salary caps.