Gambadoro: DeAndre Hopkins' Deal Good For Both Sides

The Arizona Cardinals signed DeAndre Hopkins to a two-year extension, ensuring that he will be in Arizona through the 2024 season

After Hours With Amy Lawrence
September 09, 2020 - 8:34 am
DeAndre Hopkins Arizona

USA Today Images

Categories: 

The Arizona Cardinals signed DeAndre Hopkins to a two-year, $54.5 million extension Tuesday, ensuring that he will be in Arizona though the 2024 season. The deal is worth $94 million overall and includes $42.5 million in guaranteed money.

Arizona Sports Talk host John Gambadoro wasn’t surprised to see the Cardinals extend Hopkins.

“We all knew that when the Cardinals traded for DeAndre Hopkins that they were going to have to give him a new deal,” Gambadoro said on After Hours with Amy Lawrence. “He had three years left for $39 million, but none of that money was guaranteed. So we knew when they made the trade that they would have to guarantee some money and add a couple of years on. There were no real comps outside of maybe Julio Jones, but Julio Jones only had two years left when Atlanta gave him his extension; Hopkins had three. 

“So this is a deal that works really well for both sides,” Gambadoro continued. “He gets an average annual salary of $18.8 [million], he gets $42.5 [million] guaranteed, and the Cardinals get arguably one of the top two or three best wide receivers in the NFL locked up from ages 28 to 32.”

Interestingly, Hopkins negotiated “90 percent” of the contract himself, as he has hopes of one day becoming a general manager. The deal includes a no-trade clause, and Hopkins cannot be franchise-tagged.

“Yeah, he’s one of those rare guys,” Gambadoro said. “He said he did 90 percent of it by himself. He has a couple people that work for him . . . that have been able to help him through the years, and he probably saved $2.5-3 million by not having to pay an agent fee.”

Hopkins, 28, was a first-round pick in 2013. A four-time Pro Bowler and three-time first-team All Pro, he has the most targets and the second-most receiving touchdowns in the NFL since entering the league.

“[Arizona general manager] Steve Keim said it was really one of the toughest negotiations that he’s ever done,” Gambadoro said. “The only other time he’s had to deal with a situation like that where he’s just negotiating with a player was with Larry Fitzgerald. It was really difficult for Steve because, again, no comps to really judge what you wanted to give him. They wanted him to be happy, and it’s a deal that works really well for both sides. But it was not an easy negotiation. That’s why it took right up until Sept. 8 to get the deal done.”

Hopkins should improve a unit that ranked 21st in total offense and 17th in scoring offense (22.6 points per game) last season.

The Cardinals open the season on the road against the San Francisco 49ers this Sunday. Kickoff is slated for 4:25 p.m. ET.