Steelers sign C Maurkice Pouncey to 5-year, $44 million extension

Maurkice Pouncey has to be happy with his new contract extension. (USATSI)
Maurkice Pouncey has to be happy with his new contract extension. (USATSI)

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Despite missing virtually the entire 2013 season, center Maurkice Pouncey has been rewarded by the Steelers with a five-year contract extension, according to CBS Sports' Jason La Canfora.

Pouncey, who made the Pro Bowl in each of his first three NFL seasons, was entering the final year of his rookie contract, but the Steelers and Pouncey have agreed on a max of $44 million during the next five years that includes a $13 million signing bonus. Pouncey, whose signing bonus was slightly higher than Colin Kaepernick's, will make $14 million for the 2014 season.

He'll make a $1.75 million base salary in 2015, a $3.5 million base in 2016, and in the final three seasons he'll earn a total of $21.5 million. Pouncey also will receive a total of $7.25 million worth of roster bonuses in 2015 and 2016.

Pouncey played only one quarter of Week 1 last year before teammate David DeCastro accidentally dove into his leg, tearing Pouncey's ACL and MCL. But now Pouncey becomes the highest-paid center in the league, eclipsing the five-year, $42 million deal signed by Cleveland's Alex Mack last month.

In response to the news, there were two schools of thought about the extension.

And the other side ...

And this ...

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