After three seasons with Tampa Bay Buccaneers division rival New Orleans Saints, Michael Thomas cashes in as the highest paid wide receiver ever.
In news around the NFC South, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers will have to face New Orleans Saints wide receiver Michael Thomas for at least five more years after 2019. Thomas and the Saints agreed to a contract extension that makes him the highest paid receiver in NFL history.
Thomas’s new deal with the Saints comes in at a total of $100 million over the next five years, including $61 million in guaranteed money. This amount of money dwarfs the deal that the Buccaneers and wide receiver Mike Evans were able to strike a year ago.
Throughout his career, Thomas has gone over 1,000 yards in all three years to this point and has totaled nearly 4,000 yards in that span. Last season he led the league in catches with 125, going for over 1,400 yards and nine touchdowns for the Saints. Thomas has scored 23 touchdowns on 321 receptions since 2016 in New Orleans, making two Pro Bowls and named an All Pro once.
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Last season, Thomas absolutely torched the Buccaneers’ defense, going for 278 yards and a score on an astounding 27 catches. Over his career, Thomas has only scored on the Buccaneers once, but has racked up 535 of his career yardage on 47 catches in five career games against Tampa Bay.
This deal sets the table for another NFC South wide receiver to get his money too as Julio Jones has been pressuring the Atlanta Falcons for a new deal for multiple years now. It would be hard to find a division with better receivers than the NFC South as Jones, Thomas, Evans, and even up-and-comers Chris Godwin, D.J. Moore, and Calvin Ridley all co-exist.
The NFC South will remain a pipeline for talented wide receivers for years to come as the Buccaneers, Falcons, Saints, and Carolina Panthers all have a load of talent at that position.
It will not be long until Evans starts to re-negotiate a new deal, even though he enters just the second year of his current deal with the Buccaneers. The money wide receivers are getting keeps increasing, and today it is Thomas who cashes in at $20 million annually.