As a former second-round pick still on his rookie contract who has become a 100-catch centerpiece of an offense, the New Orleans Saints’ Michael Thomas has plenty in common with the Pittsburgh Steelers’ JuJu Smith-Schuster.
As such, how likely contract-extension negotiations play out this summer between Thomas and the Saints potentially could provide a roadmap for what happens between the Steelers and Smith-Schuster next year at this time.
Drafted a year before Smith-Schuster at No. 47 overall, Thomas is entering the final year of his contract. According to ESPN, the Saints “likely will find a way to take care of Thomas” in regards to a lucrative extension before the season begins. ESPN even speculates that “it’s not out of the question that Thomas could become the NFL’s first receiver to average $20 million per year.”