Sammy Watkins took a pay cut to stay in Kansas City in 2020 and make another run at a Super Bowl.
In an interview with SiriusXM NFL Radio, Watkins said that he prioritized sticking with a winner over chasing more money if he'd have been released by the Chiefs.
"I'm at the stage of my life now to where, at first I was like 'Man, I want to get paid big money again," Watkins said. "But then I realized, how much money do I need? My family's taken care of well. Do I want I go to a team and lose, and get 1,000 yards or go to a team that's sorry, whatever the case may be. Or do I want to come back with one of the best coaches, the best quarterbacks, the best organizations, the best team, the best wideout group -- arguably -- and come try to fight for another championship?
"I sat my agent down, and we was trying to shoot for these big (contract) numbers. And I'm like, 'Man, let's just take heed of winning. I've been on a winning team within three years. I know how it felt to win. Shoot, I'd rather win another championship than go get another whatever type of crazy extension or crazy contract."
Watkins earned 673 yards on 52 receptions with three touchdowns in 14 2019 regular-season games. The middling regular season gave way to a big playoff run in which Watkins earned 288 yards on 14 catches with a score in three postseason tilts. He went five for 98 in the Super Bowl, with a huge catch to help spur the comeback against San Francisco.
A first-round pick, Watkins has earned $52.5 million in six years in the NFL, per Over The Cap, making it more palatable to prioritize where he plays over how much he plays for in one season. Set to earn $9 million in 2020 with incentives that could push it to $16 million is nothing to sneeze at either.
Watkins clearly loves playing for Andy Reid and is comfortable in K.C. Those are bigger factors than money to him at this point in his career.
The wideout's comments mesh with those from Patrick Mahomes after signing his new 10-year extension. Mahomes could have pushed for more money by trying to get to free agency or doing a shorter deal. But the MVP cited his desire to play for the Chiefs organization he trusts to continue to build a winner as the reason for leaving money at the bargaining table.