Los Angeles Rams fans continue to question when Aaron Donald will receive new deal

(Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)
(Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images) /

Training camp is right around the corner for the Los Angeles Rams and Aaron Donald is still without a new contract.

The Los Angeles Rams will begin training camp on July 26, but as of now they will be doing so without their All-Pro defensive tackle, Aaron Donald.

Donald has been wanting an extension dating back to last season, and both sides have failed to reach an end game to this point.

At the moment, Donald is currently playing on his rookie deal that will allow him to make $6.9 million this season. With this price, Donald ranks as the 24th highest paid defensive lineman, which won’t cut it for arguably the best defensive player in the game. If it’s obvious that Los Angeles needs to sign Donald to an extension, what’s the hold up?

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Contracts aren’t as simple as people think. Guys want money that assures them security, especially in a violent sport like football. Tons of contracts come down to how much guaranteed money is included in the deal, and this is an easy way for a player to be confident in their future after signing a contract.

Players also want a contract that shows they’re appreciated by the organization and loved by the fan base. We know the Rams love Donald, but it’s deeper than that.

There haven’t been any reports stating what type of numbers Donald is looking for. All we can do is assume he wants top dollar not just at his position, but as a defensive player.

Another All-Pro looking for an extension is Khalil Mack, as the defensive star is also playing the last year of his rookie deal for the Oakland Raiders, and could end up holding out of training camp. Mack is slated to make $13.8 million this season, and while this doesn’t seem all that bad, keep in mind that without an extension, he has no long-term security.

Could Donald be waiting for the Raiders to break the bank for Mack to sign his contract extension? It’s definitely possible, as Donald is likely trying to be the highest paid defensive player in the NFL.

Donald has totaled 39 sacks in his four seasons with the Rams. To compare, Mack has rounded up 40.5 sacks in 4 seasons with the Raiders.

However, the difference between the two is Mack is an edge-rusher that is considered one of the best in the league at his craft, while Donald is just an absolute game wrecker from the interior. Donald was voted as the seventh best player in the NFL among his peers in the NFL’s Top 100 (only other defensive player in the top 10 was Von Miller at No. 9).

The Rams recently inked Brandin Cooks to an extension that is worth $80 million over five years, which means the team is locked in to Cooks for six years, $88 million. Cooks has yet to step foot on the field in a Rams uniform, but was still able to earn the long-term deal. The thing is, both of these guys negotiations are different.

So for the Rams to pay Cooks before Donald means absolutely nothing. Both of these extensions are things that are high on the Rams’ checklist. Maybe this is a sign that the Rams are ready to open up their checkbook and finally end Donald’s hold out though.

According to Jason La Canfora, Donald expects a deal to be done soon:

This would be celebratory news for the Rams heading into camp. Donald is key to the Rams’ success going into this season.  I would however caution people taking these reports as 100 percent true though.

We’ve heard rumblings before that a deal would be done, and as of now there’s no deal in place. Donald has been absent from the team so far this offseason, but it would be enormous for him to get to work with all of the new guys on defense (Marcus Peters, Aqib Talib, Ndamukong Suh, Sam Shields).

Getting a long-term extension done for Donald tops the list of the most important things Rams need to accomplish. Donald receiving an extension would cast away the cloud hanging over the Rams’ future.

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This would also allow Rams to begin talking extensions with other future free-agents like Rodger Saffold, Jamon Brown, Rob Havenstein, and Lamarcus Joyner. Either way, Rams fans will still have to nervously wait for the news of Donald putting pen to paper. For the sake of everyone, let’s hope it’s sooner rather than later.