Jadeveon Clowney is coming off the best season of his NFL career.
The former South Carolina Gamecocks star continued to show why the Houston Texans selected him the No. 1 overall pick in the 2014 NFL Draft.
The Rock Hill native, who plays defensive end and linebacker for the Texans, established career highs this season with 9.5 sacks, 59 tackles, 21 for a loss, 21 quarterback hits and two forced fumbles.
Clowney was selected to play in the Pro Bowl for the second season in a row.
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Now he wants to get rewarded for all of his success.
At least that’s what his agent is saying.
Buss Cook, who represents Clowney, said the defensive star is looking for a contract extension before entering the final season of his rookie pact.
“He and I have been talking about it. He’d like to get it done, he really would. I think its real important to him so he can get that behind him and can go on and focus just on football,” Cook told Houston sportscaster Mark Berman. “With Brian Gaine being there now, it’s achievable and something we can do.”
Gaine is the Texans new general manager. According to an interview with the Houston Chronicle, Gaine is receptive to the idea of keeping the former USC star in the Lone Star State for a long time.
“It’s certainly on the horizon,” Gaine said of contract talks with Clowney, according to the Houston Chronicle. Clowney is “certainly a player that’s valued by the Texans organization, and in time, as we go through that process, we’ll arrive to that conclusion.”
Clowney is scheduled to earn $13.846 million in 2018. But, according to multiple reports, the sides could negotiate an extension that could make Clowney the highest-paid non-quarterback in the NFL, topping $114-million deals signed by Ndamukong Suh and Von Miller.
Cook said Clowney is worth the high price.
“He’s not just a great player. He’s as good as anybody out there right now, better than most,” Cook told Berman.
Clowney could get at least $29.66 million fully guaranteed at signing to cover the first two years of a deal, according to profootballtalk.nbcsports.com, which reported the Texans could choose to let Clowney play out his rookie contract then use their franchise tag on him the next two years.
Either way, Clowney will be in store for a large raise. Again, Cook said no player is more deserving.
“He’s that guy. I think they’d be well advised to keep him around and sign him to a long-term deal. I really believe he’s that guy.
“But he’s also just a great person, he really is. He’s a super guy. You can’t ask for anybody better.”
Clowney built a strong body of work at USC. During three seasons with the Gamecocks before turning pro, he was a two-time All-American and two-time All-SEC First Team selection. That includes 2012, when he was named the SEC Defensive Player of the Year and also won the Ted Hendricks Award.