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Projecting veteran extension candidates ahead of the 2023 NFL season: Mike Evans, Chris Jones and more

2EA5BA3 Tampa, United States. 07th Feb, 2021. Tampa Bay Buccaneers Mike Evans (13) rushes in the second quarter of Super Bowl LV against the Kansas City Chiefs at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida on Sunday, February 7, 2021. Photo by Kevin Dietsch/UPI Credit: UPI/Alamy Live News

We kicked off our early extension series with the 2020 NFL Draft quarterbacks, then discussed the young offensive and defensive playmakers from the class in line for new deals. Now, we transition to the veteran standouts looking for new deals before the 2023 NFL season begins.

WR Mike Evans, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Evans is entering the final year of his five-year, $82.5 million extension signed in 2018 and is coming off his ninth straight season of racking up more than 1,000 receiving yards to begin his career.

After breaking down what a hypothetical Antoine Winfield Jr. extension could look like, we prognosticated that Tampa Bay ultimately would wait until after 2023 and perhaps utilize the franchise tag en route to a multi-year pact. Here, we think the team will push to get something done on a third contract for the eventual Buccaneers Ring of Honor inductee this offseason. Evans has been outspoken about his willingness to take a team-friendly deal, though that could have been more true with Tom Brady at the helm than the duo of Baker Mayfield and Kyle Trask. Nevertheless, we expect both sides to agree to a reasonable pact that enables Evans to potentially spend his entire career with the franchise.

Working off the framework of Chris Godwin’s extension signed last offseason, Evans earns just a bit more to solidify his status as the top wide receiver on the roster.

Contract Projection: Three years, $63 million ($21 million per year), $42 million total guaranteed


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