Devonta Freeman is fresh off a huge season for the Falcons, but all anybody wanted to talk about for a bit was his contract situation. Freeman’s agents were agitating for an extension in the run-up to the Super Bowl (and after the game), and it was obvious that Freeman wanted more money after blossoming into one of the league’s best backs over the last two seasons.
The Falcons (and Freeman himself) tried to squash any suggestion that a showdown was looming, and the Falcons have pledged to make an extension for Freeman a priority. Given the amicable place the two sides seem to be in at the moment, Freeman’s not going to hold out, something he made clear in an expansive, entertaining media session Tuesday.
Devonta says "I never wanted to be the guy to hold out & leave my guys out there working." Getting mad about a contract isn't good for team.— Jeanna (@jeannathomas) May 16, 2017
Will Devonta hold out? No. "I'll just come to work. I'm a player, dawg." He wants to leave a legacy. Holding out won't do that.— Jeanna (@jeannathomas) May 16, 2017
Freeman was pretty emphatic about this, and I absolutely take one of the nicest guys in the league at his word here. Freeman has to know he’s going to get paid by someone, and given that the Falcons have made it clear that they intend to be that team, he’s probably right to take things on faith. At the same time, you can blame Freeman or his team for looking for a new contract in the first place, one that better reflects his value and
Freeman has also gained five pounds of muscle and promised to openly disrespect anyone who tries to tackle him, so this was a pretty great press conference overall. In a still elite offense, and with one of the best skill sets in the NFL intact, Free should enjoy another Pro Bowl-caliber season in 2017. Now we’ll just see how long it takes for the Falcons to pay him.