Kenny Golladay cost himself millions by turning down Lions contract


Kenny Golladay’s best contract offer actually came from the Detroit Lions, not in free agency.

At the start of the NFL legal tampering period, pass-rushers and offensive linemen have flown off the free agency board. One position market that has moved rather slowly is at wide receiver. Out of all the free agent receivers, perhaps the best is Kenny Golladay. Even though Golladay is in the top-tier of the free agency market, he actually lost money.

During an appearance on ESPN’s ‘Get Up’ earlier this month, network insider Adam Schefter reported that Golladay and the Detroit Lions had contract negotiations last year, where the receiver actually turned down a contract that would pay him between $18-19 million annually.

“Keep in mind that last year, these two sides had discussions about a long-term extension, and Kenny Golladay turned down somewhere around $18, $19 million a year, depending on who you want to believe,” ESPN NFL insider Adam Schefter said earlier this month, via

Lions: Kenny Golladay lost out on some money by hitting free agency

As Schefter says, the financial figure depends on “who you want to believe.” According to NFL Network (via, Golladay was projected to earn a contract with an annual salary between $14-16 million. So yes, that is quite a drop in annual salary.

Despite this drop in annual salary, Golladay’s market appears to be forming.

According to NFL Media insider Ian Rapoport, Golladay is slated to have an in-person visit with the New York Giants, and both sides have mutual interest.

Shortly after this came to light, Dianna Russini of ESPN reported that the Cincinnati Bengals offered Golladay a one-year, prove-it deal. It is unknown if one or more receiver-needy teams will jump in prior to his Giants visit.

Golladay is coming off a rather down season, as he missed 11 games due to a hip injury. But when he is on the field, he is a dominant force lined up on the outside. In his four seasons in Detroit, Golladay recorded 183 receptions for 3,068 yards and 21 touchdowns in 47 career games. Those numbers actually matchup to what Calvin Johnson put up in his first 47 games

While Golladay did miss out on a huge payday from the Lions, there is still a chance he can match it, especially if there is competition for his services.

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