The Washington Redskins and linebacker Ryan Kerrigan have agreed to a long-term contract, the team announced.
Kerrigan, 26, logged a career-high 13.5 sacks last season and forced five fumbles. His new deal is a five-year extension worth $11.5 million annually, with a $16 million signing bonus, NFL.com's Ian Rapoport reported.
“To get to a moment like this where you get a chance to play out the rest of your NFL career with the team that drafted you, the team that you love, the city that you love, it hasn’t really hit me yet, but it’s an awesome feeling,” Kerrigan said in a release. “Now it’s my job to go reward the Redskins for the faith they put in me by playing well this year, and for the rest of my career.”
Washington drafted Kerrigan out of Purdue with the 16th pick of the first round in 2011. He was a defensive end in college and has transitioned to outside linebacker effectively. His 38 career sacks are sixth in Redskins history.
Kerrigan added in the release that the Redskins aim to win the division this season, after going 4-12 in 2014. Washington has finished last in the NFC East seven of the past nine years.
“We want to win, and I know that’s a simple thing to say, but it is,” Kerrigan said. “I know the fans know how it was back in 2012 when we won the division, and that’s got to be first and foremost our goal for this year and for the years to come is to get back to the top of the division and then make sure that the game we’re playing in December, that they’re counting something towards the standings and that we’re a viable contender in the NFC.”
- Jeremy Woo