Chris Lindstrom contract looks better and better for Falcons

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When the Falcons made Chris Lindstrom the highest-paid guard in football last year, it was met with criticism, even by me to a certain extent.

I didn’t think Lindstrom was the best guard in football at the time, coming off his first All-Pro bid, but did admit that rarely are the highest-paid players considered the best at their respective positions. Markets are constantly reset, which is exactly what Atlanta and Lindstrom did.

Lindstrom signed a five-year contract extension with the Falcons worth $105.2 million and received $62.7 million in guarantees, including $48.2 million at signing. It broke several records, forcing Zack Martin to quickly re-negotiate his deal with the Cowboys.

Last summer, Dallas ended up giving Martin an $8.5 million raise in 2023 and 2024 after he held out of training camp, going from $27.5 million to $36 million guaranteed. Now, the Falcons’ deal with Lindstrom looks even better.

On the first day of the legal tampering period, the Panthers came to terms with former Dolphins guard Robert Hunt on a five-year, $100 million contract with $63 million in guaranteed money. Additionally, Eagles guard Landon Dickerson inked a four-year deal worth up to $87 million, with at least $50 million guaranteed.

Dickerson has overtaken Lindstrom for the highest-paid guard on an annual basis, but he’s never made an All-Pro team while Lindstrom has notched two on his belt. Similarly, Hunt signed for just a million less per year and hasn’t even made a Pro Bowl, let alone an All-Pro team.

The Falcons were ridiculed for pouring that kind of money into a non-premium position like a guard, but as interior defenders become more impactful and therefore higher paid, the interior linemen’s salaries are catching up around the league because of their importance.

The Falcons’ deal with Chris Lindstrom has the chance to age like a fine wine.

Photographer: Ian Johnson/Icon Sportswire

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