Dolphins' Landry talks to the media after OTAs
Jarvis Landry has been a good soldier.
But, at some point, he wants to be paid like a Joint Chief of Staff.
Landry said what everyone knew to be true Wednesday:
He wants a contract extension in place before the start of the regular season.
“Wouldn’t you?” he asked.
That giant payday doesn’t appear to be imminent, however. And yet, Landry doesn’t seem to be too worried about the waiting.
“We talked back and forth, but there’s nothing really going on,” Landry said. “We’re just really kind of focusing on right now, today. That’s the priority right now.”
This isn’t just talk. He’s walked the walk, too.
Landry isn’t going to play the holdout game. He has been a regular participant in the Dolphins’ voluntary spring program and was on the field for Wednesday’s organized team activities practice.
In short, he has done exactly what Dolphins coach Adam Gase expected — and that’s a good thing. The Dolphins respond better to players who quietly go about their business than those who make waves with a holdout.
“We haven’t really had too many conversations about contract status,” Gase said. “Everything’s really done in-house. I just knew he was going to show up and work as hard as he can possibly work, find a way to get better, try to be one of the leaders of this team and encourage the young guys and find ways to help us get better. The way we kind of do things here is put your head down and work and things will kind of work out and things will work out.”
There’s no question that Landry, who’s just the 105th-highest-paid wide receiver in the league, is wildly undercompensated. No player in NFL history has had more catches in their first three NFL seasons than Landry’s 288.
Still, the idea of sitting out the spring to force the issue “didn’t cross [his] mind at all,” Landry said.
“My whole objective was to help my team get to the Super Bowl,” he continued. “That starts with me being here, first of all. I’m not really worried about any contract or anything like that. I’m focused on helping my team get to the Super Bowl, week in and week out, playing hard.”
Landry added: “I don’t really have a breaking point. Honestly, I’m at the point in my life where I’m set, I’m comfortable with the position I’m in right now. Again, I’m here to help my team get to the Super Bowl, and it starts with me being here. I can’t be one of those guys that sit out or not show up or just bring bad whatever to the organization. It’s just something for me that I know that I needed to be here.”
While polite every time his contract situation came up Wednesday, Landry was far more interested in talking about the season to come.
The potential of an offense that brings back all of its skill-position players and has added Julius Thomas?
Ryan Tannehill’s much-discussed knee brace?
“That’s his swag. It hasn’t slowed him down.”
And when asked about the NFL’s decision to relax its celebration rules, Landry literally broke into applause.
“It’s about time. It’s about time. Me and the big guys are already talking about celebrations. It’s going to be interesting this year.”
Landry has proven to be a reliable and often dynamic playmaker. Given his body of work and the going rate for No. 1 receivers, it’s fair to say that Landry will someday sign a contract that pays at least $12 million annually.
Still, there’s another level for even him, Gase said Wednesday.
Here’s how he can get there:
“I think the details of the offense,” Gase said. “Any time you go through that first year, you’re trying to learn each other, you’re trying to figure out what the best thing is that a certain guy can do. Sometimes, you’ll have situations where you’re not on the same page all the time.”
Gase continued: “That’s why the offseason is so important. You can learn little details of constantly doing the same scheme over and over. Right now, we’re able to do that.”
Especially since Landry decided to show up.