Jonathan Taylor’s new agents already know how to get a massive contract from Colts
Indianapolis Colts running back Jonathan Taylor recently switched agents ahead of his upcoming contract extension, and his new agents have history with Indy.
Jonathan Taylor is entering a big season. After an ankle injury limited his production and availability in 2022, Taylor is looking to return healthy and reclaim his status as the best running back in the NFL, while also helping the Indianapolis Colts win a lot more games. Additionally, it’s also a contract year for Taylor.
Entering the fourth season of his rookie contract, it’s time for Taylor to get paid. He could be extended before the 2023 season starts, or he could get a new deal next offseason. There’s even a chance that Taylor could hit free agency, though, it seems like the Colts don’t want that to happen.
While Taylor has made it clear that he wants to remain in Indy, and Indianapolis has made it clear that it wants to keep him, there is debate outside of the Colts building about if a running back should be paid a big contract in today's NFL. Taylor hasn’t weighed in on that conversation and he told the media that he hasn’t been that focused on extension talks.
However, Taylor recently made an important move as he prepares for this negotiation. Jonathan Taylor switched agents, signing with Malki Kawa and Ethan Lock of First Round Management. Kawa and Lock already have a relationship with the Colts and have been through contract negotiations with this front office, because they also represent linebacker Shaquille Leonard.
The good news for Taylor is, Kawa and Lock made Leonard the highest-paid player at his position when he signed his extension. Could that be in store for Jonathan Taylor?
Jonathan Taylor signs with agents that got a massive contract from Colts for Shaquille Leonard
Two offseasons ago, in 2021, Leonard signed a five-year extension worth $99.25 million, with $52.5 million guaranteed. The contract made Leonard the highest-paid off-ball linebacker in the NFL. Prior to that extension, Leonard had already led the league in tackles, been named Defensive Rookie of the Year, and made two Pro Bowl teams and three All-Pro teams.
Jonathan Taylor also has an impressive resume to bring to the negotiating table. In just his second season in the NFL, Taylor led the league in rushing yards and rushing touchdowns. He was named first-team All-Pro and voted to the Pro Bowl that season. He already has two 1000-yard seasons under his belt, and was on pace for a third behind a really bad offensive line, before being sidelined with injury. The ankle injury last season was Taylor’s first real injury in his life that caused him to miss time.
Additionally, Taylor’s value to the Colts is clear. Indianapolis has a 13-1-1 record when Taylor runs for 100 or more yards. He’s an integral part to Indy’s success, and especially the offense. That should continue to be the case even with Anthony Richardson now under center and Shane Steichen calling plays.
Will Taylor’s new agents be able to make him the highest-paid player at his position like they did for Leonard? Probably not, but he should get close. It’s unlikely that Taylor surpasses Christian McCaffrey’s $16 million annually, but he probably will fall into the $14 million a year range.