Saturday, September 10, 2022

Star Tight end Darren Waller signs 3-year extension with Raiders. CBC Sports

Star Tight end Darren Waller has agreed a three-year contract extension with the Las Vegas Raiders.

Agent Drew Rosenhaus said the side reached a deal on Saturday that adds US$51 million to Waller’s existing contract that was previously set to pay him around $7 million each over the next two seasons.

The reworked deal would pay Waller an average of about $13 million per season. This pays him $15 million a season at the bottom with San Francisco’s George Kittel at the top of the market. Waller previously had the 18th highest average annual salary in this position.

Waller had two years remaining on the contract during his 2019 breakout season. Waller was looking for a new deal and last week turned agents to Rosenhaus in hopes of speeding up the process.

The sides were able to come to an agreement the day before the Raiders’ first day of the season against the Los Angeles Chargers.

Waller is the fourth major player in the past six months to receive a lucrative extension from a new regime led by head coach Josh McDaniels and general manager Dave Ziegler. Las Vegas previously awarded deals to defensive end Max Crosby, quarterback Derek Carr and receiver Hunter Renfro.

The move to bring in Waller and close him early was one of the best by former coach John Gruden during his three-plus season in charge of the Raiders. Waller was on Baltimore’s practice squad as he tried to get his career back on track after being suspended twice for recreational drug use.

The Raiders signed him late in the 2018 season and made him a starter the following year. Since becoming a starter, Waller is second in the NFL with 252 catches for 3,006 yards, behind only Kansas City’s Travis Kelce in both categories. He is fifth in the last three years with 14 touchdown catches.

Waller, who turns 30 next week, played 11 matches last season when he suffered ankle and knee injuries. He took 55 catches for 665 yards and two TDs.

The Raiders are counting on Waller to be part of a dynamic passing attack for Carr that includes All-Pro receivers Davante Adams and Renfro.

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