As the dog days of summer wind down, and with training camp still weeks away for the Miami Dolphins, rumors continue to swirl about wide receiver Jarvis Landry’s contract situation.
Landry is entering the fourth and final year of his rookie contract, a deal worth just under $3.5 million dollars through the 2017 season. With his prorated signing bonus, he’s scheduled to make about $1.1 million this season. And that’s a vastly underpaid salary for a two-time Pro Bowl receiver who tied the NFL record for most catches in the first three years of his career (288).
That will certainly change soon, as the team will do what they need to do in order to keep Landry employed with the team. Landry is under contract through the upcoming season, so the team is under no outward obligation to renegotiate or extend his contract until it expires. But as with most teams, the Dolphins have made it clear that they intend to work in good faith with Landry in getting an extension or new contract done.
Proof of how the Dolphins now work with contracts came in March, when the team renegotiated with safety Reshad Jones, who played out his contract before receiving a 5-year, $60 million deal. There is no reason to doubt that the Dolphins will offer Landry a fair deal sometime between now and next spring, although another option would be to place the franchise tag in Landy, which would guarantee his salary to be the average of the top five wide receivers in the league.
But Landry isn’t too concerned.
“I am comfortable in my situation,” he says. “For me, I love the game so much, and this is absurd to say this, but you shouldn’t be paid to do what you love. I love the game that much. Obviously I have people to take care of. I have a mom and a family. But at the same time I love the game so much, (money) doesn’t even matter to me right now.”
One thing Landry is intent about is not letting any contract negotiations interfere with his focus on the upcoming season. His agent told the Miami Herald that Landry will not negotiate a new contract once the season has begun.
And when Landry was asked about those comments this week, he confirmed that is still the case.
“That’s accurate,” said Landry. “I just want to focus. I believe Miami is where I want to be. Miami is the place where I call home … I want to give my all, mentally, physically, emotionally during the season. So once the season starts, I just want to put all of that behind me and win a Super Bowl.”
Landry also indicated that it wouldn’t bother him if the team did decide to place the franchise tag on him. As his early comment above shows, money doesn’t drive him as much as his performance as a player.
Head coach Adam Gase also chimed in this last spring on the subject, giving a clear indication of how the team now approaches the roster and keeping their best players.
“There is a big picture that not everybody really looks at sometimes,” said Gase. “And we have to do a good job of making sure that we do what we need to do in the right order, the right way.
“I think we’re always going to do the right thing and work to keep our guys within our organization.”
This story was written by Eldon Jenson. Follow him on Twitter @EJFootball
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