At the NFL level, timing is just as important as talent. You could have all the skills in the world, but if things don't line up perfectly, you could be missing out on playing time, money and overall success in the league. When we take a look at Buccaneers receiver Chris Godwin, he could be looked at as a prime example for timing hitting just right.
The 24-year-old is coming off a 2019 campaign that was far and away his best since coming into the league as a third-round selection of the Bucs in 2017. Godwin had career-high marks across the board in receptions (86), receiving yards (1,333) and receiving touchdowns (9). All that earned him a Pro Bowl nod and second-team All-Pro honors.
Now, Godwin has established himself as a bonafide star receiver in the NFL, is entering the final year of his rookie contract and just got an upgrade at the quarterback position after Tampa Bay landed Tom Brady in free agency. As long as the injury bug doesn't bite, Godwin is poised to have another career year in 2020 and the results should get him paid handsomely.
As it relates to a potential extension coming sooner rather than later, Godwin told reporters on Thursday that there "haven't been many conversations thus far," but he isn't too worried about that. He also relayed that Bucs brass has expressed to him that he is atop their to-do list.
"They've come by and they've mentioned that [I am a priority], they've mentioned that to me, and I don't doubt that at all," Godwin said via the official team website. "I'm very confident in where I am right now. I think the biggest thing for me is coming out and continuing to prove that I can be an elite player in this league, and just being the guy that I've always been. I've always prided myself on being a good teammate, being a hard worker, and those things won't change. So if we're able to get something done this offseason or this season, then that would be awesome."
Godwin is set to make just more than $2.1 million in base salary this season, but that number is expected to jump up dramatically whenever he gets a new deal. Spotrac's model projects that he could see a four-year contract that pays him $13.1 million on an average annual salary basis, which would just squeak him into the top-15 highest-paid receivers in the league in terms of AAV. If a deal isn't reached by the time the season starts and Godwin balls out with Brady throwing him the football and puts up even more eye-popping numbers, it wouldn't be surprising at all to see that number jolt up even higher.