We’ve been calling Jalen Ramsey the NFL’s “highest-paid defensive back” but really that’s like saying that Aaron Rodgers is the highest-paid “guy who stands behind center” and including all running backs. We know that safeties do not make as much money as the top-paid cornerbacks and that was evident again on Monday after the Cleveland Browns announced a new contract for Denzel Ward.
The fourth overall pick of the 2018 NFL Draft, Ward signed a five-year, $100.5 million contract extension with the Browns this week. Why the 0.5 at the end? Because Jalen Ramsey signed a five-year, $100 million contract with the LA Rams in 2020.
Yep, that’s how it works.
Ward got $71.25 million guaranteed , which is $22,000 more than Ramsey’s.
This did not upset Ramsey, however, as he is entering the second year of his deal and will make a $15 million base salary in 2022—10x what he made in 2021. Ramsey is all but guaranteed to make $17 million in 2023 and if he continues to play at a high level, could even look for a new contract in 2024.
So Ramsey showed nothing but love for Ward beating him out by $500,000 (that Ward will likely not earn anyway, since most players don’t play out their full contract) on Twitter, saying that he had been waiting for this moment and Ward “DEFINITELY DESERVE IT”.
I been waiting on somebody else to touch that 100 club & you DEFINITELY DESERVE IT @denzelward … congrats— Jalen Ramsey (@jalenramsey) April 18, 2022
Ward has missed 13 games over his four seasons, but has also made the Pro Bowl twice. He had an NFL-long 99-yard interception return in 2021 and has allowed a passer rating under 80 in all four campaigns. Him and Ramsey are different types of cornerbacks... but I can guarantee you that neither is a safety.