Jaguars ensure Trevor Lawrence stays in Jacksonville with monster extension

• The Jaguars are showing how much they value Trevor Lawrence by giving him a massive contract extension.
Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence at the NFL Draft watch party Thursday, April 27, 2023 at TIAA Bank Field   [Corey Perrine/Florida Times-Union]
Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence at the NFL Draft watch party Thursday, April 27, 2023 at TIAA Bank Field [Corey Perrine/Florida Times-Union] / Corey Perrine/Florida Times-Union / USA

As expected, the Jacksonville Jaguars aren't letting Trevor Lawrence go anywhere. After working on a new contract for months, they've finally struck a five-year deal worth $275 million. His annual average of $55 million is tied with Joe Burrow for the highest among quarterbacks.

Ian Rapoport of NFL Media reported that Lawrence was getting a new deal with $142 million guaranteed. That's the third-highest amount of guaranteed money among quarterbacks. Rapoport later added that his signing bonus will be $37.5 million.

On a related note, Twitter user Rickey wrote before Rapoport broke the news that the quarterback and Jacksonville had reached a deal. Rickey has been known for sharing scoops in the past and has been accurate more often than not.

The Jags and Lawrence had engaged in contract talks for months. Throughout negotiations, both parties sounded optimistic they would get a deal done. The Knoxville, Tennessee native said that getting a new contract would be nice but wasn't his top priority. Whether he got it or not, his focus was on getting better on the football field.

Head coach Doug Pederson, for his part, wanted to see his quarterback get paid sooner rather than later, noting that the sooner they got it done, the faster they could put it past behind it. It's now done, and they all can now work on getting ready for the 2024 season.

Lawrence was the first overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft. Unfortunately, Urban Meyer was the coach for the Jaguars that year and severely mismanaged his rookie season. On the bright side, Meyer only lasted one season in Jacksonville. To replace him, the top brass hired Super Bowl-winning head coach Doug Pederson.

Under Pederson's tutelage, Lawrence saw notable improvement and was a huge reason behind the Jaguars' turnaround in 2022.

Following the 2022 season, Lawrence was seen as a top-10 quarterback. Unfortunately, he wasn't able to improve and instead took a step back last year. Then again, some of his regression was due to injuries and the lack of latent around him.

Realizing they needed to do a better job of helping Trevor Lawrence, the team's brass reinforced the offensive line and got him a pair of weapons in Brian Thomas Jr. and Gabe Davis in the offseason. Add the fact that the former Clemson Tiger is healthy and should have no trouble showing he's one of the top signal-callers in the league in 2024.

The Jaguars are showing Trevor Lawrence is their guy with his contract extension

The Jaguars could've waited to pay Trevor Lawrence but it wouldn't have made sense for a couple reasons. First, they already know he's their guy, even many analysts aren't yet convinced he's a franchise quarterback. If there were any doubts, they wouldn't have built the offense around him this past offseason.

Second, the longer Jacksonville had waited, the higher Lawrence's rate was going to be. By locking him up right now, they don't have to worry about salaries for the position skyrocketing in a couple years. In fact, the organization might've saved themselves a few million dollars by getting an extension done before Tua Tagovailoa and the Miami Dolphins struck a deal.

In the end, this wasn't a matter of if but when. By giving Trevor Lawrence a new deal right now, the Jacksonville Jaguars are showing full confidence in his ability to get them over the hump.

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