RENTON — Seahawks receiver DK Metcalf was long expected to be signed to the team early in training camp.
Those expectations came true when Metcalf agreed to a three-year, $72 million contract with the Seahawks, according to a report by ESPN’s Adam Schefter, which includes a $30 million signing bonus — the highest ever. registered for a receiver – and guaranteed $ 58.2 million in total. .
The NFL Network, the league’s official media arm, also confirmed the report that Metcalf will re-sign with Seattle.
That means Metcalf will be under contract with the Seahawks through the 2025 season. He was entering the final year of his rookie contract in 2022 due to earn $3.9 million.
Metcalf reported to training camp on Tuesday and attended each of the first two days of practice this week, but did not take part on the field, a so-called “hold in”, despite his contract was running.
Coach Pete Carroll spoke optimistically on Wednesday about the deal closing soon, saying “there’s a lot of work going on like right now.”
The signing bonus – which tops the previous catcher’s record of $28 million Washington gave Terry McLaurin last month. McLaurin signed a three-year contract worth up to $69.6 million with $53.1 million fully guaranteed and some familiar with the situation had speculated that the contract could be a template for what the Seahawks would end up giving Metcalf.
The extension’s $24 million average will make Metcalf the sixth-highest-paid receiver in the NFL, according to OvertheCap.com while the total guarantee is seventh.
Along with the record signing bonus, the guarantee puts him just above the $56 million of Eagles wide receiver AJ Brown, a Metcalf teammate at Ole Miss and a contract that Metcalf and his agent Tory Dandy – who also represents Brown – probably wanted to try to top by at least one digit (Brown signed a four-year, $100 million contract).
The contract length is shorter than what Seattle has typically given to its prominent pending free agents, who have typically been given four-year contracts — especially on rookie contract extensions. But the length may have been a concession from Seattle to do so, with the length allowing Metcalf to become an unrestricted free agent at the age of 28.
Most important for the Seahawks is locking down one of the team’s stars during an important transition period for the franchise after an offseason in which Seattle traded quarterback Russell Wilson and released center linebacker Bobby. Wagner.
These two moves led to the idea that the Seahawks are rebuilding and caused some to wonder if the team might consider trading Metcalf.
But the Seahawks have always said keeping Metcalf is a priority, and Carroll has repeatedly noted the team’s success in securing contracts with those it considers core players.
The timing is also in line with the team’s history of securing contracts with key players in the early days of camp, such as Wilson in 2015, Wagner in 2015 and 2019 and safety Jamal Adams the last year.
The Seahawks can now add Metcalf to that roster while completing what was the last major unfinished task for the 2022 offseason.
Metcalf played in all 49 regular season games during his three-year career at Seattle in which he has already established himself as one of the best receivers in team history. His 3,170 receiving yards are the most for any player in the first three years of a career in franchise history and he set a franchise single-season record with 1,303 yards in 2020 per year in which he was also named to the Pro Bowl and as a second-team All-Pro.
The Seahawks and Metcalf had been in talks throughout the offseason over a new contract. Metcalf made a statement, however, when he skipped the team’s mandatory minicamp in the spring. But as Carroll noted at the time, he probably wouldn’t have done much on the pitch either at the time, as he was still recovering from foot surgery in January.
Metcalf is now in good health, as Carroll said this week that Metcalf had passed his physical and that “he is fine”.
That means Metcalf will likely be on the field when the Seahawks practice again on Saturday (they’re only hosting a virtual tour on Friday that isn’t part of the team’s practices open to the public during training camp) .
While “holding” the first two days of training camp, Metcalf watched practice from the sidelines, or often on the field behind the offense, chatting with fellow receivers and coaches.
At the end of Thursday’s practice, he also stopped to sign autographs for a while. Soon, he will sign a contract that will ensure he will be a mainstay of Seattle’s offense for at least four years.
It is believed that the two parties had tentatively agreed some time ago on the basic parameters of the contract – the years and the total amount – with the total guarantees and the timing of the guarantee and bonus payments, the major hurdles to overcome.
The contract also caps off what has been a somewhat meteoric rise up the NFL receiving ladder for Metcalf in his first three years in the league. Metcalf fell to last place in the second round of the 2019 draft, 64th overall, in part due to concerns over a neck injury that limited him to just seven games in his final season at Ole Miss in 2018. There were also questions about Metcalf. ability to do more than just be a straight line deep ball receiver.
Seattle completed a draft trade with New England to get it, giving up the 118th pick to move 13 spots to get it.
Seattle’s hunch on Metcalf having been proven, they are now happily paying to keep him.
This story will be updated.