Will Patriots' passiveness comes back to bite with pricey Christian Barmore extension?

The defensive tackle got just got the second biggest contract in Patriots history.
Dallas Cowboys v New England Patriots
Dallas Cowboys v New England Patriots / Maddie Meyer/GettyImages

Bill Belichick may be gone, but his 'no days off' mentality is still alive and well in New England, apparently.

On Monday, the team announced that they've signed defensive tackle Christian Barmore to a new contract. The deal, which is a four-year extension, is worth up to $92 million and will keep the 24-year old in Foxboro through 2028. It was first reported by Boston Herald Patriots beat writer Doug Kyed.

Did Patriots' passiveness comes back to bite them?

On the surface, $92 million looks like a lot for a three-year vet who's only had more than 2.5 sacks in one season. Barmore's appeared in 44 games for the Patriots since being drafted 38th overall in 2021, but has only started 11 of those games.

To his credit, though, 2023 was a career year for him: he started the most games of his career (6), set a career-high in sacks (8.5), and almost tripled his total tackles number from the year prior. All of his stats look like a player who's still very much ascending.

And when you look at the details of the contract, only $41 million of that money is actually guaranteed. It's still a good chunk of change for an interior defensive lineman who hasn't been wildly productive for most of his career, but with the way that the iDL market has exploded this offseason, securing Barmore at that price looks pretty decent. Even with the new deal, Barmore still isn't one of the top-10 highest paid guys at his position:

Could the Patriots have gotten an even-more team friendlier deal done if they had acted sooner? Maybe. But teams aren't really in the business of handing out huge second contracts to second-year guys with four career sacks, so the timing of this deal doesn't feel particularly egregious.

So, if you want to stay wary about the size of this deal compared to the production that it's rewarded, we won't stop you. But Barmore is young, getting better each year, and still on a relatively team-friendly deal for a good chunk of his career.

There are certainly worse contracts out there. Hell, there are worse contracts on the Patriots. But if he doesn't keep improving, New England's going to have a hard time explaining the deal, regardless of where it ranks him positionally.