Tagged in: contract

Buffalo Bills, Jordan Poyer agree to reworked contract

After requesting an extension this offseason, All-Pro safety Jordan Poyer and the Buffalo Bills have agreed to a reworked contract for the 2022 season that involves up to $2 million in incentives, agents Drew Rosenhaus and Kyle Lincoln told ESPN’s Field Yates on Saturday.

“Jordan appreciates this goodwill gesture by the Bills as we continue to work for a contract extension,” Rosenhaus said to ESPN.

Poyer, 31, signed with Rosenhaus during the offseason as he entered the final year of a two-year, $19.5 million deal that he signed with the Bills in March 2020 that included $500,000 in incentives.

The new incentives cover a variety of categories tied to playing time, on-field production (such as interceptions) and team categories (win or statistical improvements), which are well within reach based on Poyer’s role and the expectations for the team this year.

Poyer, who was coming off an elbow injury, had an interception, two tackles and a pass defended in the Bills’ season-opening 31-10 over the Los Angeles Rams on Thursday.

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He had expressed his desire for a new deal this offseason as well as his affection for playing in Buffalo.

Rosenhaus was on site at the start of the team’s training camp and met with general manager Brandon Beane.

“I want to continue to play football and play my best football in Buffalo for as long as I can, however long that may be,” Poyer said Aug. 29. “But like I said, I’m here with the guys right now, and I’m ready to attack this season.”

The 2013 seventh-round pick out of Oregon State by the Philadelphia Eagles has been with the Bills for the past five seasons, and he has played alongside safety Micah Hyde, who is signed through 2024, throughout that period.

Poyer, along with Hyde, did not attend the team’s voluntary offseason programs, but he did participate in the team’s mandatory minicamp before breaking for the summer and was full go after that. The safety suffered a left elbow injury Aug. 2 and did not comeback to practice until Aug. 27.

“He’s very special, very special,” Hyde said. “I think that I wouldn’t be the player I am today without him. And I think it’s safe to say that he wouldn’t be the player he is without me. I’ve told you guys this before, every single day we push each other.”

Poyer has 19 interceptions over his time in Buffalo, including five in 2021. He had a career-high three sacks last year along with 93 tackles.

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Brooklyn Nets, Kevin Durant meet, agree to ‘move forward’ together after star’s trade demands

Kevin Durant is staying in Brooklyn, according to a statement from Nets general manager Sean Marks.

“[Coach] Steve Nash and I, together with [governors] Joe Tsai and Clara Wu Tsai, met with Kevin Durant and Rich Kleiman in Los Angeles yesterday,” Marks said in a statement. “We have agreed to move forward with our partnership. We are focusing on basketball, with one collective goal in mind: build a lasting franchise to bring a championship to Brooklyn.”

Durant originally asked for a trade on June 30 and reiterated that desire in a meeting with Joe Tsai in London earlier this month, sources confirmed to ESPN. During that meeting, Durant wanted Tsai to choose between him and the brain trust of Nash and Marks.

Instead, Nash and Marks will retain their jobs, while Durant will stay in Brooklyn, New York, as the four-year, $198 million extension he signed last offseason kicks in this season.

The Nets have spent the better part of the offseason dealing with upheaval from stars Durant and Kyrie Irving.

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Irving, who played in 29 games last season after choosing to not get the COVID-19 vaccine, created a list of teams he would have liked the Nets to consider working with on a sign-and-trade deal. However, no viable trade materialized and Irving opted into the final year of his contract.

The Nets could still trade him as an expiring contract (although Irving would have no formal voice in a potential landing spot) and have until June 30 of next year to work out an extension before he becomes an unrestricted free agent.

With Irving and Durant still with the team, the Nets will look to improve upon last year’s first-round playoff exit and hope Ben Simmons will be a part of that.

Simmons was traded to Brooklyn in a deal that sent James Harden to Philadelphia, but he has not yet made his Nets debut. Simmons underwent a microdiscectomy procedure in May to address pain located in a herniated disk in his lower back, but he is expected to be healthy for training camp.

According to Caesars Sportsbook, the Nets’ odds to gain the NBA championship moved from 18-1 to 9-1 after the Nets announced Durant will stay.

The 9-1 odds push Brooklyn ahead of the Los Angeles Lakers for fourth-best odds to win the title behind the Celtics (+450), Warriors (+650), Suns (+800), Clippers (+800) and Bucks (+800).

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Rams coach Sean McVay announces he signed extension with team during offseason

Los Angeles Rams head coach Sean McVay stated Tuesday that he signed a contract extension during the offseason, but the team was waiting to announce it until general manager Les Snead signed an extension as well, which hasn’t happened yet.

During his first press conference of training camp, McVay was asked about a possible contract extension. He said, “We are in a good place. … I feel really good about the direction that’s going in and I think it’ll be something where it’ll be me and Les and you guys will know when that is finalized for us.”

McVay said Tuesday that he gave that answer in July because “We wanted to be able to announce that when both of us [had] gotten done.” McVay built on that further by saying that’s why he had hoped to wait to confirm his deal, prior to its mention in an extended profile of the coach posted Tuesday on ESPN.com.

“It is something that we’ve been taken care of, but it is very important for Les and I to kind of have that represented as we’re a partnership and a pair,” McVay said. McVay, who didn’t disclose the terms of the long-expected deal, said he feels “good” about the extension, saying it was “always a really good dialogue that existed.

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“These things, they take time, but I think it is important,” McVay said Tuesday. “We had a respect for the process. We wanted it to be able to be announced when both Les and I got done because of the partnership. And I think it’s only gotten better as we go, but that’s kind of where it’s at right now.”

The Rams, led by McVay and Snead, are coming off a Super Bowl LVI victory and their second Super Bowl appearance since McVay was hired in 2017.

McVay, who was the youngest head coach in modern NFL history when he was hired by the Rams, has led Los Angeles to a 55-26 record in five campaigns.

Snead joined the Rams as general manager in 2012, and the franchise is 86-74-1 in his 10 seasons at the helm. In 2016, Snead moved up the draft board from the 15th pick to the first overall pick to take quarterback Jared Goff.

His recent blockbuster trades involved adding quarterback Matthew Stafford in January 2021 and linebacker Von Miller in November 2021. He also signed wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. mid-season, another crucial piece to the Rams’ playoff run and Super Bowl conquest.

Snead and the Rams’ front office have also given out several large contract extensions this offseason, signing Stafford and wide receiver Cooper Kupp through the 2026 season and reworking defensive tackle Aaron Donald’s contract to make him the highest paid non-quarterback in the NFL.

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Los Angeles Lakers, LeBron James hold ‘productive’ contract extension talks

LeBron James and the Lakers had a “productive” discussion in regards to their future together on Thursday, Rich Paul, CEO of Klutch Sports Group, told ESPN.

No new deal has been agreed upon yet, however, sources said.

James and Paul met with Lakers vice president of basketball operations and general manager Rob Pelinka as well as new Lakers coach Darvin Ham in the war room at the Lakers’ practice facility in El Segundo, California, on Thursday. It was the first day James was eligible to sign a two-year, $97.1 million contract extension with the Lakers.

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Paul told ESPN he expects both sides to continue a dialogue moving forward.

James is entering his contract’s final year, worth $44.5 million, and will be 38 years old when his current deal is up.

The maximum length of a contract a player aged 38 or older can sign is two years, according to the NBA’s collective bargaining agreement.

James has until June 30 to sign the extension before becoming an unrestricted free agent.

It is probable James could seek a one-year extension, worth $47 million for the 2023-24 season, with an additional year with a player option for 2024-25.

The optionality could be intentional.

His eldest son, Bronny, is entering his senior year of high school, making him NBA eligible in 2024. James has repeatedly stated his wish to team up with his son on an NBA roster before he retires.

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New England Patriots and punter Jake Bailey agree to four-year, $13.5 million contract

Punter Jake Bailey, a 2020 first-team All-Pro, agreed to a four-year contract with the New England Patriots worth $13.5 million, a source told ESPN’s Adam Schefter.

The deal runs through the 2025 campaign and includes $6.5 million fully guaranteed, per Schefter.

Bailey, 25, was entering the final year of his rookie contract, and carried a salary-cap charge of $4.05 million — the second highest of any punter in the NFL.

“I’m just so happy and blessed I get a few more years here,” Bailey stated after Monday’s practice, adding that it is a “huge milestone” in his life.

“Any time there is uncertainty, it’s always something in the back of your head. But at our position, you have to be able to compartmentalize and execute, and if you’re not able to do that with whatever is distracting you, you’re not going to play very long.”

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The extension is expected to lower his cap charge by about $1.85 million, increasing the Patriots’ overall cap space to about $4.75 million.

While the team gains cap relief, the 6-foot-2, 205-pound Bailey — who entered the NFL as a fifth-round draft choice out of Stanford — earns some long-term security.

He punted 49 times last season and posted a 47.3-yard average (eighth in the NFL) and 39.6 net (21st in the NFL). He also handles kickoff and holding duties.

Bailey’s powerful leg is especially helpful to the Patriots when weather conditions turn colder and windier later in the season in New England.

Coach Bill Belichick places a notable emphasis on winning the field-position battle, and Bailey has often been effective in helping the team do so.

In 2020, when he was named first-team All-Pro, Bailey punted for a 48.7 average and 45.6 net, with just five touchbacks.

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Phoenix Suns, coach Monty Williams agree to long-term extension

The Phoenix Suns and Monty Williams, the NBA’s reigning coach of the year, have agreed on a long-term contract extension, sources told ESPN on Saturday.

Williams, who was voted the National Basketball Coach’s Association’s coach of the year in consecutive seasons, had two years left on his original five-year deal, and now moves under contract for several more years.

Williams’ impact on the Suns’ organization has been deep, including a trip to the 2021 NBA Finals and a franchise-record 64 regular-season victories last season.

Williams has gone 149-78 (.656) in his three seasons and delivered accountability and purpose to a wayward Suns’ program, transforming a team that had won 19 matches prior to his arrival into one of the league’s best teams.

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The Suns last season joined the 1969-70 New York Knicks as the only teams to finish with a better road victory percentage than every other team’s home victory percentage in a season.

The Suns were 47-0 when leading after three quarters — the best in the shot-clock era.

The only two other teams that went undefeated in that scenario in the regular season both included LeBron James — the 2017-18 Cleveland Cavaliers and the 2019-20 Los Angeles Lakers.

Among the Suns’ regular-season dominance last season: a franchise-record 18-game winning streak and three separate winning streaks of nine-plus games in a season when the rest of the NBA had a combined four streaks of nine or more victories.

The Suns were the only team to rank in the top five in offensive and defensive efficiency and went 33-9 in clutch-time games — the best record in such situations in the NBA since the 2015-16 Golden State Warriors.

Despite the league-best and franchise-record 64 victories, the Suns were blown out in a Game 7 at home to the Dallas Mavericks in the Western Conference semifinals.

Phoenix reached the NBA Finals in 2021, losing in six games to the Milwaukee Bucks. Through the past season, Williams’ leadership was tested by the distractions of an NBA investigation into owner Robert Sarver’s behavior, stemming from an ESPN investigation.

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Dallas Mavericks land free-agent center JaVale McGee for 3 years

The Dallas Mavericks and center JaVale McGee have agreed to a three-year deal worth $20.1 million, sources told ESPN’s Tim MacMahon.

The deal includes a player option for the third season, sources said.

McGee enjoyed arguably the best season of his career as the backup center and stopgap starter on a dominant Phoenix Suns team last season, averaging near career highs in points and rebounds on a per-minute basis.

He proved to be a key depth piece for Phoenix after the Suns lost Frank Kaminsky for the season with a knee injury and saw Deandre Ayton miss several matches.

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McGee gives Dallas some much-needed rim protection and a big lob-threat target for Luka Doncic.

McGee joins Christian Wood as the second frontcourt addition Dallas made this offseason after getting crushed on the boards by Golden State in the Western Conference finals.

McGee told ESPN he expects to be the Mavs’ starting center. “I saw some opportunities out there where I was like, ‘Oh yeah, if they had a rolling big, they could dominate in a different aspect,'” McGee said of choosing Dallas and playing with Doncic.

Entering his 15th campaign in the NBA, McGee has been a part of three championship teams — two with the Golden State Warriors (2017, 2018) and one with the Los Angeles Lakers (2020).

He is also reuniting with Mavs head coach Jason Kidd, who was on Frank Vogel’s staff during L.A.’s run to the title. A pure rim-rolling center, McGee has averaged 1.5 blocks while shooting 57.6% from the field for his career.

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Kendrick Nunn, 26, opts into final year of contract with Los Angeles Lakers

Kendrick Nunn, who missed all of last season because of a bone bruise in his right knee, is opting into the final year of his contract with the Los Angeles Lakers worth $5.25 million, sources told ESPN on Tuesday.

Nunn, who turns 27 this summer, signed with Los Angeles for the midlevel exception last summer but never played a match during the regular season after injuring an ankle during training camp and later discovering the bone bruise, which was slow to heal.

The Chicago product came into the league undrafted out of Oakland and latched onto the Miami Heat, averaging 15 points on 36.4% from 3 and 88.1% from the foul line in two seasons, along with 3.0 assists and 2.9 rebounds per game.

During his exit interview with reporters in April, Nunn announced his plan to return to Los Angeles.

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“Knowing that I just took this entire year off, it’s a no-brainer for me to opt in,” Nunn said.

Nunn’s decision puts the Lakers at five guaranteed contracts on the books for next season, along with LeBron James ($44.47 million), Anthony Davis ($37.98 million), Talen Horton-Tucker ($10.26 million) and Austin Reaves ($1.56 million).

Russell Westbrook, entering into the final year of his deal worth $47.06 million, has until June 29 to inform L.A. whether he intends to opt in or not.

Los Angeles also has team options on Stanley Johnson ($2.35 million) and Wenyen Gabriel ($1.88 million) for next campaign.

Even if the Lakers exercise those options, the front office will still have half the roster to fill out this summer as it looks to regroup from one of the most disappointing seasons in franchise history (33-49 in 2021-22).

In other Lakers news, the team is hiring Nets assistant coach Jordan Ott for a more prominent role on Darvin Ham’s new staff.

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Pittsburgh Steelers sign DT Larry Ogunjobi to one-year deal

Former Cincinnati Bengals defensive tackle Larry Ogunjobi signed a one-year deal with the Pittsburgh Steelers on Tuesday.

The Steelers did not disclose financial terms of the contract.

Ogunjobi now will have played for the Cleveland Browns, Bengals and Steelers, leaving the Baltimore Ravens as the lone AFC North team not to have had him on their roster.

Ogunjobi had also visited the New York Jets since his three-year, $40.5 million deal with the Chicago Bears fell apart after he failed his physical on March 18. The Bears wouldn’t say why he failed the physical, but Ogunjobi did undergo offseason surgery to repair a right foot injury.

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The Steelers had a glaring need for defensive line depth after the retirement of Stephon Tuitt earlier this offseason.

Ogunjobi will be most important in stopping the run, a major focus of the 2022 Steelers after the run defense concluded last in the league a season ago. Ogunjobi had 12 tackles for loss last season in Cincinnati and has 41 in his career.

Ogunjobi has a little history with the Steelers. He was involved in the 2019 on-field altercation between Browns defensive end Myles Garrett and Steelers quarterback Mason Rudolph and was suspended one game.

Last campaign, Ogunjobi was part of the overhaul that helped the Bengals go from the lowest sack total in the NFL in 2020 to 11th in 2021, registering a career-high seven, which was tied for the third most of any interior defensive lineman, according to ESPN Stats & Information research.

His sack total last season was nearly half of his combined total over four seasons with the Browns (14.5).

Ogunjobi, 28, missed most of Cincinnati’s run to Super Bowl LVI after he suffered a season-ending foot injury in the wild-card victory versus the Las Vegas Raiders. Overall, the 2017 third-round draft pick has 21.5 career sacks with 229 tackles and two forced fumbles.

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Aaron Rodgers: ‘Definitely’ will finish career with Green Bay Packers

Aaron Rodgers stated Tuesday he doesn’t know how many more seasons he will play — admitting that the three-year, $150 million contract extension he signed in March shouldn’t be an indicator — but he knows where he will conclude his career.

A year after he skipped the Green Bay Packers’ mandatory minicamp as part of his offseason of discontent with the organization, he was asked whether he planned to finish his career with the only team he has ever played for in the NFL.

“Yes, definitely,” Rodgers said.

That was in doubt as recently as March, when everything from retirement to asking for a trade was on the table.

Rodgers put any of that doubt to rest on Tuesday after the first practice of the Packers’ mandatory minicamp. He had previously skipped most of the voluntary offseason program to instead work out in Southern California.

“I’m just here so I won’t get fined,” Rodgers said with a smile, channeling his inner Marshawn Lynch.

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He may have only been half joking. A source said that last June, after Rodgers skipped the mandatory minicamp, the team sent him a letter informing him that he would be fined for his absence.

Tuesday’s practice was his first opportunity to throw to newly acquired receivers.

Sammy Watkins (signed as a free agent) and 2022 draft picks Christian Watson (second round), Romeo Doubs (fourth round) and Samori Toure (seventh round).

The only key member of the Packers’ offense not in attendance was receiver Allen Lazard, who has not yet signed his restricted free-agent contract.

“I miss the guys,” Rodgers said, “I love being around the guys. It’s been a nice offseason. I appreciate my [training] team back in Southern California and the work we put in. But it’s good to be back out here with the guys. Good to meet Christian and Romeo and get reacclimated with some of the older guys. It’s just about timing and them feeling the cadence and the urgency and stuff, and just nice to be back in the building with these people.

“They’ve been great about me taking care of myself the way I best need to. Obviously it’s worked out the last couple years by my play, and I expect nothing less.”

Packers coach Matt LaFleur originally wasn’t sure how much work he would give Rodgers on Tuesday, but after seeing that the reigning MVP was in good shape, he allowed Rodgers to take part in almost every drill, including some 11-on-11s that were at a jog-through speed.

The Packers are coming off three straight 13-win seasons but failed to reach the Super Bowl in any of them, including two losses in the NFC Championship Game.

And now Rodgers has to deal with life after Davante Adams, the All-Pro receiver who wanted out of Green Bay and was traded this offseason to the Las Vegas Raiders.

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