The Cleveland Browns traded for wide receiver Jarvis Landry prior to free agency, and now they’ve signed him to a mammoth extension.
General manager John Dorsey was aggressive on a Friday afternoon in March, trading for Jarvis Landry and Tyrod Taylor within hours of each other. Fast forward a month, and Dorsey is making sure that one of them stays for the long haul.
On Thursday, the Browns signed Landry to a gigantic five-year deal worth $75 million including $47 million guaranteed. Cleveland is hoping that Landry continues to mature as a top-end threat, something that he’s not quite been to this point.
The former LSU star amassed a pair of 1,000-yard seasons with the Miami Dolphins, but is only averaging 10.1 yards per catch over his four-year career. Landry, 25, led the league in receptions a season ago with 112, but failed to notch 1,000 yards. In Cleveland, Landry will be flanked by Josh Gordon and Corey Coleman, hopefully opening up space for him across the middle and down the seam.
Looking at the reported deal, the youngster checks in fifth at his position with $15.1 million per year, slotting in behind Antonio Brown, Mike Evans, DeAndre Hopkins and Sammy Watkins. All four of those men are considered game-breaking threats, while Landry has been more of a possession receiver to this point. The guaranteed money also dwarfs anything we’ve previously seen at his position, with nobody having previously eclipsed $40 million.
Cleveland might not have minded paying out a large sum considering its vast amount of cap space. Before this deal, the Browns clocked in at $71 million under the threshold.
If the Browns are going to escape for the AFC North basement for the first time in years, Landry and his fellow weapons (Carlos Hyde, Coleman and Gordon) have to be difference-makers. Cleveland finally has some hope, and it paid a premium for it.