Advertisement
Share

Matthew Stafford and Rams agree on a four-year, $160-million contract

Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford passes during a win over the San Francisco 49ers in the NFC championship game.
Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford passes during a win over the San Francisco 49ers in the NFC championship game at SoFi Stadium on Jan. 30.
(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

After leading the Rams to a Super Bowl title, the only question about a contract extension for quarterback Matthew Stafford centered on when the team and player would complete the deal.

The Rams and Stafford did not wait long.

Five weeks after he led the Rams to victory over the Cincinnati Bengals in Super Bowl LVI at SoFi Stadium, Stafford signed a four-year extension, the team announced Saturday.

The deal is for four years and $160 million, with $135 million guaranteed, according to a person with knowledge of the terms who was not authorized to speak about the deal publicly and requested anonymity.

Advertisement

Rams’ takeaways from Russell Wilson trade: Rams’ Matthew Stafford is now the grand old man of NFC West with younger signal-callers as division rivals.

Stafford, 34, was entering the final year of a five-year, $135-million contract that he signed with the Detroit Lions in 2017. He was due to carry a salary-cap number of $23 million this season, according to overthecap.com, but that number is expected to be lower because of the extension. Stafford had been due to receive a $10-million roster bonus Sunday, according Sportrac.com.

Stafford’s deal is regarded as team friendly in that it will enable the Rams to continue to surround the 13-year veteran with talent. It also could portend more moves.

After the season, Rams coach Sean McVay said signing Stafford and star defensive lineman Aaron Donald to new contracts was an “incredibly high priority.”

The Rams are expected to offer Donald an extension that reworks the six-year, $135-million contract he signed in 2018.

The Rams got $16 million in cap savings when veteran left tackle Andrew Whitworth retired last Tuesday. A day later, they released veteran punter Johnny Hekker, who carried a cap number of $3.2 million.

Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford scrambles during the first half of Super Bowl LVI.
Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford scrambles during the first half of Super Bowl LVI against the Cincinnati Bengals on Feb. 13.
(Julio Cortez / Associated Press)

Last Thursday, the Rams signed free agent receiver Allen Robinson to a three-year contract that includes $31 million in guarantees. The Rams also are attempting to re-sign receiver Odell Beckham Jr.

The Rams also traded receiver Robert Woods, who carries a $15.7-million salary cap number, on Saturday, clearing more cap space to sign an elite pass rusher to replace Von Miller or, perhaps, sign a veteran linebacker such as Bobby Wagner.

Stafford is the key to the Rams’ pursuit of more Super Bowl titles.

Stafford, the first pick in the 2009 NFL draft, requested a trade from the Lions after the 2020 season. The Rams sent quarterback Jared Goff, two first-round draft picks and a third-round pick to the Lions for Stafford, who had never won a playoff game.

But Stafford showed his mettle last season.

He passed for 41 touchdowns, with 17 interceptions, while leading the Rams to a 12-5 record and the NFC West title.

The Rams added to a formidable attack by agreeing to a three-year deal with receiver Allen Robinson as Robert Woods and free agent OBJ deal with injuries.

Stafford, who engineered several game-winning drives during the regular season, was at his best during playoff victories over the Arizona Cardinals, Tampa Bay Buccaneers and San Francisco 49ers before leading a comeback victory over the Bengals.

Stafford helped Cooper Kupp become the first receiver since 2005 to lead the NFL in catches, yards receiving and touchdown receptions. Kupp was voted the league’s offensive player of the year.

The Rams receiving corps currently includes, Kupp, Robinson, Van Jefferson, Ben Skowronek, Tutu Atwell and Brandon Powell, the Rams’ primary kick returner who agreed to terms with the Rams on Saturday.

Powell joined offensive linemen Joe Noteboom and Brian Allen among unrestricted free agents re-signed by the Rams.

Stafford and the Rams will try to become the first team to win consecutive Super Bowl titles since the New England Patriots in the 2003 and 2004 seasons.


Advertisement