NFL notebook: QB Wilson becomes league's top-paid player
The Seattle Seahawks and Russell Wilson agreed to a four-year extension worth a reported $140 million, making the franchise quarterback the highest-paid player in the NFL.
The deal, which includes a $65 million signing bonus and no-trade clause, was
reached late Monday night. Wilson confirmed the new deal in a Twitter post
"Hey Seattle, we got a deal," Wilson said from his bed, next to his wife,
Ciara. "Go Hawks. But I'ma see y'all in the morning. Time for y'all to go to
Wilson's reported annual average of $35 million tops the blockbuster extension
signed last summer by Green Bay quarterback Aaron Rodgers at $33.5 million.
Rodgers' deal included a $57.5 million signing bonus, also topped by Wilson.
--The Oakland Athletics reportedly offered Kyler Murray, their 2018
first-round draft pick, a whole lot of money to give up his football dreams.
Sports Illustrated reported that Oakland offered to add a guaranteed $14
million to his $4.6 million signing bonus to try to persuade the Heisman
Trophy winner to play baseball. The A's also would have added him to their
Instead, the 21-year-old Murray, who won the Heisman Trophy at Oklahoma last
season, walked away from baseball to enter the 2019 NFL Draft. He could be the
first player selected when the draft kicks off on April 25 in Nashville, Tenn.
--The Atlanta Falcons reunited with defensive end Chris Odom and signed
offensive lineman John Wetzel, the team announced.
Odom got a two-year deal. The 24-year-old originally signed with the Falcons
as an undrafted free agent in 2017 but was eventually cut. He went on to play
seven games with Green Bay and is coming off a halted season in the Alliance
of American Football league where he registered 2.5 sacks for the Salt Lake
Wetzel, 27, inked a one-year deal with the Falcons after spending the past
three seasons with Arizona, where he made 24 starts. The 6-foot-7 combo
guard/tackle was put on injured reserve last November due to a neck injury.
--Los Angeles Chargers wideout Travis Benjamin received a one-year extension
through 2020 as part of a reworked contract, ESPN reported.
Benjamin reportedly will receive a $3 million signing bonus in exchange for
agreeing to reduce his 2019 base salary from $5.25 million to $1 million. His
2020 salary wasn't immediately known.
The new agreement creates $2.75 million in salary-cap space for the Chargers,
according to ESPN.
--The New England Patriots signed four-time Pro Bowl wide receiver Demaryius
Thomas to a one-year deal, according to published reports.
Thomas, 31, could earn up to $6 million on the deal, NFL Network reported. He
bolsters New England's passing attack ahead of next week's NFL draft.
In nine seasons with Denver and Houston, Thomas has hauled in 688 catches for
9,330 yards and 62 touchdowns. The Broncos traded him to the Texans before
last season's trade deadline, and he finished the year with 59 catches for 677
yards and five touchdowns in 15 games overall.
--Chicago Bears tight end Zach Miller announced his retirement, 18 months
after he sustained a horrific knee injury.
He had hoped to return to the game but in an Instagram post said he just
physically couldn't do it.
"The time has come to move on from playing the game of football," Miller, 34,
said in the post. "It has been an incredible journey for myself and my entire
family and we can't thank you enough for your continued support. I would love
more than anything to step on Soldier Field one last time but I physically
cannot give the game and our fans what they deserve."
--The NFL will release the 2019 schedule Wednesday night during a televised
show on NFL Network.
The unveiling begins at 8 p.m. ET, and it comes one week before the NFL draft,
which starts April 25.
The NFL previously announced that the season will kick off Sept. 5 with a game
between the Green Bay Packers and Chicago Bears, a storied rivalry to
commemorate the league's 100th anniversary.
--Field Level Media