"Broncos Country, let's sign." -- Russell Wilson (probably).
Wilson agreed to terms on a five-year extension with the Denver Broncos through the 2028 season, the team announced Thursday. Wilson's new deal is worth $245 million and includes $165 million guaranteed, NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported, per sources.
The quarterback had two seasons remaining on his deal signed in Seattle, so the extension ties him to Denver for the next seven years.
"For me, this has been an amazing journey. I remember being up on the stage not too long ago and talking about the visions and the goals and the missions, and I think the best part of it all is when you're around some amazing people, amazing teammates who are so dedicated to the craft, it makes this that much more enjoyable," Wilson said in a Thursday news conference. "I believe this is a marriage, and you want to be here for a long time, and my goal is to be able to finish my career here."
After shelling out players and draft picks to acquire Wilson from the Seahawks in March, the plan was always to extend Wilson. Sides waited for the new Walton-Penner ownership group to be approved and weigh in before striking the long-term contract.
"In just a few short months with the Broncos, Russell has already had a dramatic effect on this organization both on and off the field," Broncos general manager George Paton said in a statement announcing the extension. "His leadership, work-ethic and championship mentality have helped elevate our team in partnership with Coach (Nathaniel) Hackett, his teammates and the staff.
"I'd like to thank Greg Penner and our entire ownership group for the support and resources to get this long-term extension done. I also appreciate the collaboration and communication with Russell's agent, Mark Rodgers, along with Rich Hurtado on our staff. We will continue to focus on building and maintaining a championship roster with Russell as our quarterback well into the future."
The $49 million per year in new money on the five-year extension puts Wilson right behind back-to-back MVP Aaron Rodgers ($50.3 million) and ahead of Kyler Murray($46.1 million). But the $165 million guaranteed falls short of Deshaun Watson's fully guaranteed $230 million deal.
After a decade in Seattle under Pete Carroll's ground-first approach, Wilson now takes over in Denver under former Green Bay Packers offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett. Expectations have soared a Mile High in Denver since acquiring Wilson, who helped generate 10-plus wins in eight of his 10 seasons in Seattle.
As the prettiest deep-ball thrower in the NFL, Wilson will help open up a restricted Broncos offense, and it's his opportunity to prove he can win while cooking.
With two years left on Wilson's deal, the Broncos could have hedged and let the 2022 season play out before determining if a big extension made sense. Instead, they backed up their all-in play and their belief that the 33-year-old is the missing piece to their playoff puzzle.
"I came here knowing that I was going to be ready to play on the two years," Wilson said. "And then George came to Mark and I and said 'Hey, what do you think?' and we started talking about everything and we got really excited about the idea of being here for a long time."
Wilson returns to Seattle in Week 1 with a new team and a new whopper of a contract.
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