Kuechly, the No. 9 overall pick in the 2012 NFL Draft, has been one of the league's best defensive players over the past three seasons and is well worth the $11.1 million he'll be guaranteed in 2016.
Carolina has been fortunate to have the torch passed on from one great interior linebacker -- Jon Beason -- to another. Kuechly has yet to miss a start, which is rare for a player at his position.
Now, we'll wait for the next step and see how Gettleman handles the massive extension that is sure to follow.