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[Rapoport] The Colts & All-Pro LB Darius Leonard agree to terms on a blockbuster 5-year, $99.25M contract extension to make him the highest paid ILB


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  • stitches changed the title to [Rapoport] The Colts & All-Pro LB Darius Leonard agree to terms on a blockbuster 5-year, $99.25M contract extension to make him the highest paid ILB

Man, that's steep for a LB.  But....he's earned it.   Next step is consistency over the years and avoiding injuries.  If he does that we'll be watching another Colt go in to the HoF.  He's the closest thing to Derrick Brooks that I've seen.

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Just now, danlhart87 said:

I'm just gonna say it

Colts overpaid for him!

 

I love Leonard but 20m for a LB is wild!

 

I know the league is changing constantly and contracts are always rising though.

The scheme the colts play WILL is very important. How many games last season did Darius win for us. A couple including that Texans game and he had that huge play in the. Jax game to send us to the playoffs.

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Just now, Pat Curtis said:

Any reports on how the contract is structured?  Hopefully it's front loaded since we have a ton of cap space in the near future.  That way his later years are killers.

Typically the Colts set their contracts up  so the guaranteed money is front loaded and do small to no signing bonus.  This way if the player declines they can walk away with little cap hit. 

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4 minutes ago, Pat Curtis said:

Any reports on how the contract is structured?  Hopefully it's front loaded since we have a ton of cap space in the near future.  That way his later years are killers.

 

 $60M the first 3 years guaranteed. A standard Colts type contract it would apprears.

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1 minute ago, throwing BBZ said:

 

 $60M the first 3 years guaranteed. A standard Colts type contract it would apprears.

 

Not bad at all, even though it's steep.  Cap could skyrocket soon with NFLPA seeing how much these teams are worth...

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29 minutes ago, danlhart87 said:

I'm just gonna say it

Colts overpaid for him!

 

I love Leonard but 20m for a LB is wild!

 

I know the league is changing constantly and contracts are always rising though.

Well, I understand.  But this is how the NFL works, after all — and the reason that the 49ers would choose to trade away a player like DeForest Buckner for a 1st round draft pick at the same position rather than try to figure out how to afford to keep him there.

 

It’s a shocking number for an LB.  But Darius is clearly one of the best in the league and if the Colts wouldn’t have offered him that, somebody else would’ve.

 

So there are their two choices:  pay the heart and soul of a rejuvenated defense or gamble with that defense in an effort to save cap.  Not much of a choice.

 

At least we’re not having to carry a massive contract like Josh Allen’s or Patrick Mahomes’.

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He deserves it. The whole notion that the best player gets paid the most is antiquated. As long as you're in the top 5-10 at your position, you should get paid the most if your agent is doing his/her work. Last man gets paid the most. Darius isnt the best at his position (to me) but he is top 5-10 and has a burning desire to become the best, that drive is there. As long as he stays healthy, the Colts FO should be satisfied with this deal.

 

Remember, last man gets paid best. UNLESS you have a case like Mahomes where for the next year or two, no one can rightly argue that they should be paid more than him.

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58 minutes ago, danlhart87 said:

I'm just gonna say it

Colts overpaid for him!

 

I love Leonard but 20m for a LB is wild!

 

I know the league is changing constantly and contracts are always rising though.

 

Guys like Big Q and Leonard are exactly who teams should give money to.

 

- They were both Colts draft picks and big hits for Ballard

- They both work incredibly hard and have exactly the mentality and attitude that the team wants to have

- They've both been incredibly productive

- They've both been relatively healthy (as healthy as can reasonably be expected in such a violent game)

 

The face that they play LG and LB means nothing to me. We all know that Ballard wants to draft his own guys and pay the ones that earn it. That's exactly what he's doing and rightly so.

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It’s a good contract, Leonard’s play for this defense is valued higher than it would be in different schemes. He is also going to be one of the leaders of this defense. I also believe showing a commitment to paying your own that have earned it will help keep the family like team vibe. 

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What a great day for all involved(Colts, Leonard and fans).

 

It's great we got it done now, so some of the new contract can be paid out this year, reducing cap hit for the future years. Anxious to see the structure.

 

Even more anxious to watch Leonard in the Blue and White for the next 5-6 years.

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1 hour ago, Pat Curtis said:

Man, that's steep for a LB.  But....he's earned it.   Next step is consistency over the years and avoiding injuries.  If he does that we'll be watching another Colt go in to the HoF.  He's the closest thing to Derrick Brooks that I've seen.

Stats wise he's every bit as good as Brooks, just has to maintain and have the longevity.

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1 hour ago, danlhart87 said:

I'm just gonna say it

Colts overpaid for him!

 

I love Leonard but 20m for a LB is wild!

 

I know the league is changing constantly and contracts are always rising though.


It is pretty wild. Kudos to Darius for getting it though. He’s earned a huge payday.

 

Unlike Smith, I think this will be a situation where they end paying for past performance, which is actually sort of fair, given how much value he provided on his rookie deal.

 

Someone else mentioned it as well, but those 2-3 games he seems to miss each year might become 4-5 or even more if injuries accumulate. I mean…just look at this latest ankle injury.

 

Hopefully that doesn’t happen, but he is an undersized LBer who plays very aggressive, so I think there’s more risk here. Mostly, I just hope injuries don’t also impact his play as he ages, especially since he will be in his late 20s throughout this deal.

 

 

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1 hour ago, danlhart87 said:

I'm just gonna say it

Colts overpaid for him!

 

I love Leonard but 20m for a LB is wild!

 

I know the league is changing constantly and contracts are always rising though.

I tend to agree, but remember its not just now but the future.........  It will look LESS ugly in 2-3 years, as other LBs get their new contracts, and....... the cap should keep growing....

 

 

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13 minutes ago, MikeCurtis said:

Any of the capologists wish to weighin?

 

Not much to weigh in on at the moment. Need to see contract structure.

 

 

For entertainment purposes, lets speculate.

 

His current deal is 1yr $4.28m($840k guaranteed)

 

Extension 5yr $99.25m $52m guaranteed(remainder of current 2021 cap hit + 2021 bump and 22/23 fully guaranteed)

 

Lets say he gets a $5m bump in 2021

 

Leaves $94.25m to spread over those 5 years, reports say first 3 yrs $20m/per.

 

So new contract:(*guaranteed)

2021:$9.28m*

2022:$20m*

2023:$20m*

2024:$20m(partial guarantee)

2025:$17.25m

2026:$17m

 

 

Maybe something like that?

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A million or two more then I wanted to pay a year, but I'm still happy with it. If we let Leonard go to FA, we would of regretted it forever. The heart and soul of our defense, absolutely love him as a person and player. Very happy for Darius as he earned this contract.

 

Hopefully he stays healthy for us and helps win us a SB!

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1 hour ago, danlhart87 said:

I'm just gonna say it

Colts overpaid for him!

 

I love Leonard but 20m for a LB is wild!

 

I know the league is changing constantly and contracts are always rising though.

The salary cap is different now , qb are making 40-50m a year so it make sense line backers are gonna be pushing 17-20m range,

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28 minutes ago, Four2itus said:

It's been so long folks.......and now, the Colts have a STUD lb.....homegrown. So tired of watching the Steelers and Ravens draft them. This time........the Colts did it!

 

I can't remember the last time we drafted a STUD LB.  Mike Peterson was really good for us, David Thornton even better.  Rawb Morris was a letdown until he was moved to Sam for the Super Bowl run.  All of those were far from "STUD" status though.

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2 hours ago, danlhart87 said:

I'm just gonna say it

Colts overpaid for him!

 

I love Leonard but 20m for a LB is wild!

 

I know the league is changing constantly and contracts are always rising though.

 

Big time. I would have franchised him. Let him play out the year. Think Colts will regret paying this much

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27 minutes ago, Moosejawcolt said:

 

Big time. I would have franchised him. Let him play out the year. Think Colts will regret paying this much

Leonard is a great contributor here but is kinda overrated too 

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