Montez Sweat

Jaguars LB Josh Allen's massive extension gives Montez Sweat's contract strong value

The Jaguars made Allen the second highest-paid edge in the NFL on Wednesday

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The Jaguars handed their prime outside linebacker, Josh Allen (not the Bills QB), a massive extension, worth just north of $141 million over five years --- an average $28 million salary per year.

Don't get it twisted, he earned it. Last season, he finished tied second in the NFL with TJ Watt with 17.5 sacks. His previous high over his five-year career came from his rookie season when he eclipsed 10.5 sacks.

But his contract reset the outside linebacker market, besting Giants' Brian Burns by less than a million in total value. And if you consider Allen an edge rusher, which he plays, too, he slots in second in total value and average annual value (AAV).

Allen's contract provides a friendly lens into Montez Sweat's four-year contract with the Bears, which is worth $98 million. Sweat got pushed to sixth in AAV and eighth in total contract value for edge rushers upon Allen's massive extension.

And if memory serves, Sweat's contract value wasn't viewed in a widely favorable light upon his acquisition. Remember, when the Bears traded for Sweat, he was playing in the final season of his rookie contract with the Commanders.

By trading for Sweat before notching a deal, the Bears lost negotiation power, as logic would dictate. Sweat held power in negotiations as the Bears coughed up a second-round pick for his services. If the Bears wanted the pick to be worth the value of Sweat's presence, they would need to sign him long-term.

But, of course, Sweat controls whether or not he'd prefer to stay in Chicago or test the waters in free agency. Indeed, they eventually inked him to a deal just south of $100 million.

Now, that contract looks like a steal for the Bears, given his contract's ranking amongst the league's best edge rushers and outside linebackers. Especially, if you consider how well Sweat played in his first half-season with the Bears.

He finished the season with 12.5 sacks, making him the first player ever to lead two teams in sacks (6.5 sacks with Commanders and 6 sacks with Bears). His presence helped the Bears' pass rush tremendously. It also helped the secondary with their coverage.

Before trading for Sweat, the Bears owned the 27th-ranked defense in the NFL, allowing 27.3 points per game. By the season's end, they moved to the 19th-ranked defense in the league, erasing five points from their permitted average score per game (22.3 points allowed per game).

The Bears have Sweat under contract until 2028. At 27 years old now, Sweat will just cross the 30-year-old threshold upon finishing his contract.

Once seen as a potential risk, Poles' move to trade and extend Sweat appears to be a big success before he finishes his first full year with the team.

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