SANTA CLARA, Calif. — The San Francisco 49ers and defensive end Nick Bosa have agreed to a five-year, $170 million extension that will make him the highest-paid defensive player in history, a source told ESPN’s Adam Schefter on Wednesday.
The extension includes $122.5 million guaranteed, the source told ESPN.
That $34 million annual payout surpasses the $31.7 million average belonging to Los Angeles Rams defensive tackle Aaron Donald and the $122.5 million in full guarantees easily surpasses the $80 million mark set by Pittsburgh Steelers pass rusher T.J. Watt.
It also comes before the Sept. 10 regular season opener against the Pittsburgh Steelers, meaning Bosa could be available for that game.
That the Niners and Bosa eventually struck a deal is no surprise. That it took 43 days after the team opened training camp is. San Francisco has made a habit of re-signing some of its big-name players either just before camp or soon after it opens. They followed a similar blueprint with tight end George Kittle in 2020, linebacker Fred Warner in 2021 and receiver Deebo Samuel in 2022. But Bosa’s deal, the largest of that group, proved more complicated.
Despite Bosa’s absence, Shanahan and general manager John Lynch never expressed any doubt that a deal would get done and were adamant that trading Bosa was never an option.
For his part, Bosa, who generally prefers to do his offseason work with his brother Joey in Ft. Lauderdale, showed up at the team’s June minicamp and reiterated his belief that his payday would come so long as he remained patient.
On June 6, Bosa said he was “pretty confident” a deal would get done either before training camp or just after it opens. When he was asked whether he expected to become the highest-paid defensive player in the league, Bosa demurred.
“I think I’ll get what I deserve,” Bosa said.
Clearly, it took a bit longer than even Bosa, 25, was expecting but the Niners now have the reigning NFL Defensive Player of the Year under contract.
In 2022, Bosa posted his best season, earning his first All-Pro nod and a third Pro Bowl berth for his league-leading 18.5 sacks, 51 tackles, two forced fumbles and 58 quarterback pressures (third in the NFL). That dominant performance came two years after Bosa suffered a torn ACL in his left knee in Week 2 of 2020.
But that injury is well in Bosa’s past, as he’s posted a combined 34 sacks over the past two seasons. Bosa’s new contract also gives him a little bit of family bragging rights as he surpassed the five-year, $135 million deal with $78 million fully guaranteed his brother, Joey, signed with the Los Angeles Chargers in 2020.