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Could Cincinnati Bengals DT Geno Atkins’ new deal affect the Los Angeles Rams’ negotiations with DL Aaron Donald?

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The Bengals decided to #paytheman.

Los Angeles Rams DL Aaron Donald during the Rams’ 32-16 Week 13 win over the Arizona Cardinals, December 3, 2017.
Los Angeles Rams DL Aaron Donald during the Rams’ 32-16 Week 13 win over the Arizona Cardinals, December 3, 2017.
Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

DT Geno Atkins has re-signed with the Cincinnati Bengals on a four-year deal for $65.3 over the course of the deal.

Perhaps most interesting is the breakdown:

What’s relevant here for Los Angeles Rams fans, obviously, is the ongoing contractual negotiations with DL Aaron Donald. What’s different is two-fold. For one, this is Atkins’ second contract extension while Donald is negotiating his first. Secondly, Atkins turned 30-years old in March; two months later, Donald turned 27.

So it’s not going to be in line with what will be required to keep Donald, but it is worth looking at. One thing of note is how frontloaded it is. The contract is at about $19m per year in the first two years and just less than $14m for the final two years. That makes sense given Atkins’ age, but (a) Donald might not be as interested in a frontloaded deal as long as it isn’t easy for the Rams to get out of it after the first three years and (b) recent deals to RB Todd Gurley and WR Brandin Cook suggest the Rams’ modus operandi might not be as rigid.

Still, it’s the second major deal in two days after the New York Giants inked WR Odell Beckham, Jr., to a major contract extension leaving Rams fans to wonder when we’ll get to celebrate a contract extension for a superstar of our own...