Updated: Jul 3
By Adam Aniba
The long awaited extension for Terry McLaurin is finally done. In fact, it's the first time a Washington receiver has been extended to a multi-year deal since Santana Moss in 2011. The $28 million signing bonus is the highest for an NFL receiver in history. The $53 million+ in guaranteed money is also notable for a notoriously stingy Washington franchise .
Not only has it been over a decade since Washington shelled out a long term deal for a WR, but they finally kept a face of the franchise from playing elsewhere. It was debatable if Kirk Cousins or Trent Williams fit that role, but there should be no debate that McLaurin is the current face of the franchise.
It's been a change from the old ways for Washington, which has kept their own stars as of late. In fact, over the last 18 months, Washington as re-signed Logn Thomas, Chase Roullier, Jonathan Allen, Charles Leno Jr, J.D. McKissic and now McLaurin.
After dealing with a quarterback carousel his entire career in Washington, McLaurin finally has the chance to catch passes from a seasoned/accomplished veteran with Carson Wentz. The former Buckeye receiver has been durable, but has also been the go-to target, with close to half of the teams production through the air since he arriving in Ashburn.
All signs point to a career year for McLaurin. The upgrades at QB, WR, RB and TE will keep opposing defenses honest, with the potential for McLaurin to go vertical more often. Sixth year veteran Curtis Samuel will be expected to be more of a factor this season (making over $10 million this season), after only being active for five games, recording 6 receptions in '21. Rookie receiver Jahan Dotson has opened eyes during minicamp and is primed for a large role early on. Just having McLaurin on the field makes the other receivers better.
McLaurin is a class act in the mold of Hall Famer Art Monk. That might be a lofty statement, but #17 is a team first guy and it was evident during his days at Ohio State.
It's rare to have a player pen a letter to this organization/fans for the sheer excitement after getting LTD. In most cases, it's been farewell letters under the Snyder regime. Although one player can't be expected to change the fortunes for an entire organization, a precedent has been set by Ron Rivera by keeping their own blue chip players. Washington made a wise investment by bringing back a key piece to their offense and like Monk, could be the next in line to wear gold jacket for Washington in Canton.