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Aaron Donald on new deal: 'We'll see what happens'

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Rams star Aaron Donald is still waiting for a new contract, but the All-Pro defensive tackle isn't about to let money interrupt his preparation for training camp.

"I'm just letting my agents handle that side of the thing," Donald told SiriusXM NFL Radio on Thursday. "And all I have to do is, you know, keep working, keep myself in top shape. Like I said, my agent is going to handle that side of the thing."

Donald eased concerns about a potential holdout when he reported to mandatory minicamp earlier this month. On Thursday, he was asked point blank if he might stay away from training camp if talks bog down.

"I'm just working, just grinding," Donald said, "and we'll see what happens. So ..."

It's a vague answer, but it's hard to believe the Rams will screw this up. General manager Les Snead has beaten the drum this offseason about the team's desire to reward Donald, saying in May that negotiations were "serious."

Scheduled to make just $1.8 million this season under his rookie pact, Donald is tied to the Rams through 2018 after the club picked up his fifth-year option. The reality is that a lucrative new deal will need to be reached long before all that.

It's worth noting that an extension for Donald is at least partially tied to the fate of cornerback Trumaine Johnson, who has yet to sign his $16.742 million franchise tag.

"If they're able to do a new deal for [Johnson], they can cut that salary-cap hit maybe in half, maybe more, free up some space, and allow them to do a deal for Aaron Donald," NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport said earlier this month on NFL Network. "Aaron Donald and the Rams have been trying to work out a new deal. There's no indication -- despite the fact he showed up -- that the two sides are anywhere close [in agreement]. It's a long process."

Long process, indeed, but it's impossible to imagine any scenario where Donald -- the best player on this team -- doesn't stay fixed in a Rams jersey deep into the future.

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