>>Cowboys, WR Bryant Agree To Five Year Extension
The Dallas Cowboys and Dez Bryant have come to terms on a five-year contract just ahead of Wednesday's deadline for franchise-tagged players, ending a drawn-out saga between the team and the All-Pro wide receiver over his long-term future.
According to NFL.com, Bryant will receive $70 million over the length of the new pact, $45 million of which is guaranteed.
Bryant and the Cowboys had until 4 p.m. (ET) Wednesday to negotiate a long- term deal. Otherwise, he would have been forced to play next season under the $12.8 million franchise tender for wide receivers.
The Cowboys and Bryant's representatives had been at an impasse for months after the club slapped the franchise tag on its star wideout. Bryant had publicly threatened to skip training camp if a deal had not been reached, and would not have been subjected to fines for doing so since he had not signed the tender.
On the field, Bryant has been among the NFL's most dangerous and productive receivers over the past three years. The talented 26-year-old has logged at least 88 catches, 1,233 yards and 12 touchdowns in each of those seasons, capped by a league and career-best 16 TD grabs in 2014.
Bryant finished this past season with 88 receptions for 1,320 yards to help the Cowboys to a 12-4 record and an NFC East title, as well as a win over Detroit in the Wild Card round of the conference playoffs.
Originally selected by Dallas with the 24th overall pick of the 2010 draft, Bryant has compiled 381 catches totaling 5,424 yards and 56 touchdowns in five seasons with the Cowboys.
>>Broncos, WR Thomas Agree To Five Year Extension
The Denver Broncos signed wide receiver Demaryius Thomas to a new five-year contract on Wednesday.
Denver used its franchise tag on Thomas during March and had until Wednesday's deadline to negotiate a new long-term deal.
Thomas, a three-time Pro Bowl selection, will reportedly make $70 million over the length of his new pact with $43.5 million guaranteed. He would have been subjected to a one-year, $12.8 million salary this season if a new agreement was not reached.
The 27-year-old Georgia Tech product has started all 16 games in each of the past three seasons and has logged at least 1,430 yards and 10 touchdowns over that time.
Thomas recorded career highs in catches (111) and yards (1,619) while catching 11 touchdown passes last season. He set the single-season franchise record for receiving yards and also receiving yards in a game (226).
Selected by the Broncos with the 22nd overall pick in the 2010 draft, Thomas has compiled 5,317 yards and 41 touchdowns on 351 receptions in 69 career games spanning five seasons.
>>Chiefs, NFL Sack Leader Agree To Long Term Deal
The Kansas City Chiefs and reigning NFL sacks leader Justin Houston have reached an agreement on a new contract.
Houston revealed the news on his Twitter feed Wednesday, hours before a deadline to either agree to a multi-year deal or settle for the franchise tag offer the Chiefs placed on him in March.
"Blessed to sign contract with the KC Chiefs," Houston wrote Wednesday. "Thanks to my family #1 & my agents Joel Segal & @gbo74 for the awesome contract!"
Houston would have earned $13.195 for the upcoming season under the franchise tag, but NFL.com reported the new deal to be worth $101 million with $52.5 million in guaranteed money.
It would be the richest deal in the club's history and the largest for a linebacker, eclipsing the $100 million deal the Texans gave J.J. Watt last September.
The 26-year-old Houston had 22 sacks last season, breaking Hall of Famer Derrick Thomas' single-season franchise record and coming within a half-sack of Michael Strahan's NFL mark.
Houston has appeared in 59 games for the Chiefs since the club selected him in the third round of the 2011 draft. The three-time Pro Bowl selection has compiled 48 1/2 sacks, 248 tackles, one interception and seven forced fumbles.