The Washington Commanders have reportedly agreed to a massive long-term deal with Pro Bowl defensive tackle Daron Payne, sources with knowledge of the situation told ESPN's Adam Schefter on Sunday (March 12).
Payne reportedly agreed to a four-year, $90 million contract, which includes $60 million guaranteed and will make him the second-highest paid defensive tackle in NFL history behind Los Angeles Rams star Aaron Donald, according to Schefter, who predicted the agreement will likely set the market for other top free agent defensive tackles.
"And now, there is a beginning framework for other mega DT deals that have a chance to get done in the coming weeks, including ones for the Titans’ Jeffery Simmons, the Jets’ Quinnen Williams and the Giants’ Dexter Lawrence," Schefter tweeted.
The reported deal comes days after the Commanders had placed a franchise tag on Payne, making him the first NFL player to receive the tag this offseason. Payne was projected to receive $18.937 million in 2023 as part of the franchise tag, according to ESPN.
Payne was selected by the Commanders at No. 13 overall in the 2018 NFL Draft. The former University of Alabama standout recorded a career-best 64 tackles, 11.5 sacks and 18 tackles for loss in 2022.
Payne was a member of Alabama's 2017 College Football Playoff national championship team and the College Football Playoff National Championship Game Defensive MVP, as well as the 2018 Sugar Bowl MVP during his final collegiate season.
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