Aaron Donald: Eight Years And Out Or Run It Back?

Jeff Lewis/therams.com

Aaron Donald is in the conversation of the greatest defensive player of all time. He has won three DPOY awards, DROY, multiple All-Pro awards, and now he has a Lombardi to cement himself as one of the best to ever do it. Before this year’s Super Bowl, there were rumors that Donald would retire in the offseason. After winning the Super Bowl, Donald was bombarded with the question of whether he was staying or not. Though he doesn’t have much else to prove, many can’t believe retirement is even on the table. So, let’s take a look at the current situation that Aaron Donald is in. Disclaimer, this is an outside view inside the current situation.

I Am Athlete Podcast

Aaron Donald joined the “I Am Athlete” podcast where he spoke to former players Brandon Marshall, Lesean McCoy, and Pacman Jones about various topics. In the podcast, there were many indications that Donald does in fact want to come back. He referenced his current contract negotiations, where it has become clear that he wants to be paid like the best defensive player in the NFL. He also references how he has always wanted to just play eight years and then retire. The problem with that is, he said he wants to taste a Super Bowl victory again. Although he was passionate about wanting to win a Lombardi again, he said he would be at peace if he were to retire this offseason.

Donald also brought up how he wants to take a shot at acting. He called out The Rock letting him know he is coming for his spot. Pairing this with the breaking news that he had signed with Donda Sports, one can tell Aaron Donald is already looking at what lies ahead post-football.

Big Payday On The Way?

It is unlikely that the Rams let Donald retire without offering him the farm. That can get tricky though, given their current cap situation. They don’t have a ton of room to work with regarding this year, but surely they can kick the can down the road. If the two sides do agree to a deal, Donald probably won’t play out the entire deal. The amount Donald would potentially receive is still up in the air. Somewhere around $30M a year is the expected amount. Aaron Donald deserves whatever he wants from the Rams.

Both the money and roster need to be right for Donald to return. The defense just added Bobby Wagner this offseason, and McVay has been clear in attempting to get Odell Beckham Jr. back. Will that be enough?

Retirement

Donald could retire this offseason, but it seems unlikely. He is too good for the Rams to let slip. They will throw him whatever amount he wants, and deal with the damages. This next season could be his last. Though, I don’t think he will retire until Sean McVay has a plan set in place to leave the Rams to head up to the booth. Call me optimistic. If the Rams are to win another Super Bowl, he will almost definitely retire. It would be the perfect ending, and that is probably a big reason he is considering it now. Whatever happens, everyone can appreciate what Donald has done for the game. Where is he on your “greatest defensive players of all-time” list?

Thanks For Reading!

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