By Earl Heath, Contributing Sports Writer
After raking in so many honors last season such as NFL Offensive Player of the Year and Super Bowl MVP, Los Angeles Rams Wide Receiver Cooper Kupp needed something big to certify his spot among the league’s greatest wide receivers. His current contract doesn’t end until 2023
The Rams rewarded Kupp with a contract extension that makes him one of the highest-paid players at his position. His brilliance was all over the field after averaging 114.5 receiving yards per game with 145 receptions for 1,947 yards and 16 touchdowns — all NFL highs, making him the first player to achieve the receiving triple crown since 2005.
The 28-year-old will be a Ram through the 2026 season under a reported three-year extension for $78.5 million which increases his total contract five years for $110 million.
About $75 million in guaranteed money in the new deal is the most ever for a wide receiver. But the $22 million yearly average for the five-year package makes Kupp the sixth highest-paid wide receiver. The new pay rate would be the highest on about half the teams in the NFL.
“Really glad to be coming back to Los Angeles, being here for the long haul. It’s just going to be an incredible ride. Can’t wait to be back at it,” Kupp said in a video posted on the Rams.
It was just a few days earlier teammate Aaron Donald signed and a new 90 plus million restructured contract paying him 32 million for two years with an option for a third. That makes him the highest paid non quarterback in the NFL.
Quarterback Matthew Stafford also signed a four-year, $160 million extension in March (taking him through 2026)
The Rams are all in on “Running it Back” as they don’t want any distractions once the season starts.