Plaxico Burress signs two-year extension

September 4, 2008 4:50:06 PM PDT
Super Bowl hero Plaxico Burress is finally going to be paid like one of the NFL's top receivers. Hours before the New York Giants kicked off the season against the Washington Redskins on Thursday night, Burress signed a two-year contract extension that will bump his salary into the $7 million range over the next five years. The deal includes $11 million in guaranteed money that will be paid this season.

Burress had three years remaining on his original contract that he signed in 2005. He was to have earned about $10 million over that period.

"We always remained hopeful that it would get done before the season started," general manager Jerry Reese said. "It came down to the last few minutes and we're happy to get it done so we can move forward in our season. Plax is happy to get the contract done as well. It took a little longer than we expected it to take, but Plax was professional about it the whole time. We're excited and happy that it's over and we're ready to move forward into this new season."

Drew Rosenhaus, Burress' agent, said the deal was not completed until 3:45 p.m., about 15 minutes before the team had to report any contract changes to the NFL.

"I am glad we were able to get it done and that Plaxico will be able to play this season without any distractions," Rosenhaus said in a telephone interview with The Associated Press. "It went right down to the wire. It was a rollercoaster ride."

Receivers Terrell Owens of Dallas and Randy Moss of New England signed contracts in the offseason that will pay them about $9 million annually.

Burress capped the Giants improbable run to the NFL title by catching a game-winning 13-yard touchdown pass in the final minute to give New York a 17-14 win over the New England Patriots in the Super Bowl.

Despite playing on a sprained ankle all season, Burress had a team-high 70 receptions for 1,025 yards and a career-high 12 touchdowns. He added 18 catches for 221 yards in the postseason.

The Giants and Burress have been talking about a contract for months. He refused to practice in a minicamp in June because there was no progress in talks to reach a new contract. He was fined by the team.

"Plax has been an outstanding player for us," Reese said. "We basically kind of approached each other about this contract. We felt like something should be done with the contract. We put our heads together and made it make sense for him and made it make sense for the New York Giants as well."

Burress caught 209 passes for 3,227 yards and 29 touchdowns in his first three seasons with the Giants with all the touchdowns being thrown by Eli Manning.

"He is a big-play threat for us on the field," Reese said. "Plax opens things up for other people and he obviously can make big plays himself. Eli has all of his weapons intact and we expect them to pick up where they left off last season."