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Matt Prater signs four-year deal with Denver Broncos

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Kicker Matt Prater believes he has earned his new four-year contract with the Denver Broncos.

 

Franchise-tagged kicker Matt Prater signed a four-year contract with the Denver Broncos, the team announced Monday.

"I'm really excited just to see the offense, what they're going to be doing, because the offense can also make my job easier, too," Prater said during a conference call, referencing the Broncos' offseason signing of quarterback Peyton Manning. "Maybe I'll just have to kick a lot of extra points, which would be awesome."

Prater's contract is worth $13 million over four years and includes a $3 million signing bonus, The Denver Post reported. According to reports out of Denver last month, Prater and the team had been close on a contract that was expected to be worth around $3 million per season.

Prater missed all of the Broncos' offseason workout program as a result of the negotiating process, but he said he never really lost patience with the team.

Since joining the Broncos in 2007, Prater has connected on 90 of 112 (80.1 percent) field-goal attempts, including 12 of 16 (75 percent) from beyond 50 yards. In 2011, Prater was 19 of 25 on field-goal attempts, with seven makes coming in either the fourth quarter or overtime in four of the Broncos' eight wins.

Prater said he felt like he first demonstrated his value to the franchise when Josh McDaniels was the Broncos' coach.

"A couple years ago, when (I was) just kicking and seeing the other kickers, I realized I definitely had the talent and I knew I could do it," Prater said. "I just had to prove myself, and the Broncos saw that and rewarded me."

Including Prater, seven of the 21 players designated with the franchise tag this offseason have received multiyear extensions. Quarterback Drew Brees (New Orleans Saints), running backs Ray Rice (Baltimore Ravens) and Matt Forte (Chicago Bears), wide receiver Dwayne Bowe (Kansas City Chiefs), defensive end Cliff Avril (Detroit Lions), safety Dashon Goldson (San Francisco 49ers) and kicker Josh Scobee (Jacksonville Jaguars) each has yet to sign his tender.

Prater's extension, along with the four-year, $13.2 million contract signed earlier in the offseason by franchise-tagged Tampa Bay Buccaneers kicker Connor Barth, could spur negotiations between Scobee and the Jaguars.

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