Jarvis Landry has been traveling this offseason, most notably to England for an NFL promotional tour, but the fact he was in Davie Monday morning was a big deal.
The Miami Dolphins began their offseason conditioning program on Monday -- just as 23 other teams did -- and so players were expected to be present for the voluntary program. Except, you know, it is voluntary.
And often times players who want new contracts don’t show up on such dates. Reshad Jones passed on the Dolphins’ program to start 2016. Former Dolphins left tackle Branden Albert, traded to the Jacksonville Jaguars in March, did not report to the Jaguars Monday because he wants an extension.
The new contract is the thing and the players use their presence at conditioning programs and OTAs and minicamps as leverage to get a new deal.
Landry is not.
Landry showed up.
He wants a new contract, rest assured. The team knows it and Landry’s agent has spoken to the Dolphins at least a dozen times on the matter this offseason.
But one of the issues that has been keeping this extension from actually being agreed to has been how Landry positions himself as a team leader.
And team leaders don’t hold out for contract extensions. At least they don’t if they expect to actually get that extension under this Dolphins administration.
Jones, you’ll recall, held out in ‘16 and didn’t get the extension he wanted that year even after he came back and reported for minicamp. He had to wait until March to get his extension.
The Dolphins have laid down a marker that tells players, if you want a contract extension, you do what is right all the time, including while you’re itching for your money in the offseason. In other words, you show up when everyone else does.
That message has reached Landry. And then it was his choice whether he would do what seemed right in the eyes of the team or what seemed right to his own interests. Today, he did what seemed right to the team.
And in doing that, he definitely helped himself because this is the first step toward Landry getting that new extension. If Landry continues to show up, continues to participate in OTAs and minicamps and so forth, he’s going to get his extension.
My guess is this will be done before the beginning of training camp in July but perhaps even sooner. It could come by the end of minicamp in mid June before everyone in the NFL goes on vacation.
That extension is going to make Landry the Dolphins’ richest wide receiver, which is saying something because Kenny Stills this offseason signed an $8 million a year deal. Landry’s deal will be bigger because he’s caught over 280 passes for the team the past three years while outperforming his rookie deal.
One more thing about the significance of Landry showing up for the offseason program: Adam Gase said he would when he was asked at the NFL annual meeting if he was worried about a Landry holdout.
“I’m not because he’s a football player that loves being part of our program,” Gase said. “He’ll be there, trust me.”
It’s good that Landry didn’t make his coach look foolish. Making sure that doesn’t happen is another way to get that contract extension.
Jarvis Landry is on the right course.
Follow Armando Salguero on Twitter: @ArmandoSalguero