Sports

Aussie NFL monster has a few weeks to earn $100m contract

Aussie NFL monster Jordan Mailata has one pre-season to win a $100 million contract extension after staggering comments from his team this week.

The 24-year-old former South Sydney Rabbitohs talent was this week confirmed as a leading candidate to start the 2021-22 NFL season as the Philadelphia Eagles’ starting left tackle — a position that commonly commands contracts around $20m per-season.

Mailata started 10 games for the Eagles last season and he has shown enough in his rapid development to give new head coach Nick Sirianni some serious headaches surrounding his selection of which player will start at left tackle — the primary position for protecting a quarterback in the offensive line.

Mailata made his starting team debut in October and just a few months later he has emerged as potentially one of the most important players on the team.

If Sirianni decides Mailata is the best person to protect quarterback Jalen Hurts this season, he is set for a payday that would make him one of the highest-earners in Australian sport.

Mailata is in the final year of the $US2.5 million deal he signed when drafted by the Eagles in the 7th round of the 2018 NFL Draft.

He is a free agent next year — and he will command an insane contract upgrade if he is able to prove himself at left tackle.

Mailata has the most important pre-season training camp of his life ahead of him this year when he will have a showdown with former first-round draft pick Andre Dillard for the left tackle position.

With the Eagles looking to move on with their offensive line, there are predictions the winner between Dillard and Mailata could hold the left tackle position for 10 years.

Former NFL star Colin Scotts has told The Daily Telegraph, the development means Mailata could be in position to earn a contract upgrade worth up to $100 million.

“Philadelphia are ready for him to stand up and be their left tackle, which would be a major accomplishment,” he said.

“Offensive tackles are signing up for $20m (a year). The money is off the charts.”

He said the Eagles will likely offer a contract for 3-5 years.

Offensive line coach Jeff Stoutland said this pre-season there will be a real battle between Mailata and Dillard.

“Oh there’s definitely a competition,” Stoutland said.

“And I think that anytime there is competition like that and it’s that close, it brings the best out of both players. Both players have to be on every day, all day because it’s a competition.

“Whoever’s the most productive and whoever does the best, whoever has the best value going into the season, will be the starter.”

Sirianni will make the decision before the first round of the NFL season begins on September 10, when the Philadelphia ­Eagles play the Atlanta Falcons.

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