After Further Review: Five takes on Alvin Kamara’s new contract extension

After Further Review: Five takes on Alvin Kamara’s new contract extension
New Orleans Saints running back Alvin Kamara (41) runs a drill during an NFL football training camp practice at the Ochsner Sports Performance Center in Metairie, La., Thursday, July 20, 2020. ( Photo/David Grunfeld, Pool) (Source: David Grunfeld)

NEW ORLEANS, La. (WVUE) -Take One: Kamara cashes in

Five years. $75 million. $34.3 million guaranteed.

When negotiations hit a stand still last week, they were at a little over $12M per season.

Given that number, I thought they would settle in between$13-$14M. Kamara ended up getting $15M per season. That’s tied for second most in the NFL with Ezekiel Elliot. His $34 million in guarantees are third in the NFL.

I didn’t think the Saints were going to give Kamara, Christian McCaffrey money, which they didn’t. But they did come a lot closer to that contract than I thought they would.

Take Two: Saints know they need AK in life after Drew

When it finally comes time for Drew Brees to retire, the Saints will venture into the unknown at quarterback. Regardless of who takes over, as I wrote months ago, it sure will help that new signal-caller to have a do-it-all back to help lighten the load and ease the transition.

Would this deal have gotten done with Brees in his prime? Maybe, we’ll never know, but all that matters is the timing was perfect for this kind of a deal at this position.

Take Three: RBs getting paid

It’s time to officially retire the narrative that running backs aren’t valued anymore. It’s simply no longer true. McCaffrey, Kamara, Dalvin Cook, Travis Henry and Joe Mixon all landed lucrative deals this offseason at $12 million or more.

Though, some have questioned the need to pay running backs big bucks, it’s clear that some are getting top dollar and deservedly so.

Take Four: Fine print on the contract

It will be interesting to see the details and structure of this contract. With $34 million guaranteed, and a $15 million signing bonus, this realistically feels more like a three-year deal where both sides can revisit after that.

Take Five: Other observations

  • Before the extension, Kamara was the 50th-highest paid running back in the league. Clearly, he was one of the best bargains in football for his first three years.
  • If the Saints had any concerns about Kamara’s back, they wouldn’t have made this deal.
  • With the big payday comes big expectations for Kamara. He knows that. He’s now paid like a superstar and will have to continue to be one.

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