Is Mike Evans Demanding Over $30 Million Annually?

December 28th, 2023

Interesting chatter between two former superstar receivers this week.

Mike Evans, the greatest receiver in Tampa Bay history, leads the NFL in touchdowns with 13, one more than Tyreek Hill. Evans is having a stellar season in a new offense with a new quarterback. That’s rare.

Hall of Fame receiver Michael Irvin and ex-Bucs Super Bowl receiver Keyshawn Johnson think Evans wants $30 million or more per year when his contract runs out after this season. The duo talked about it during Undisputed on FS1.

Johnson reminded viewers that Evans and the Bucs were talking contract prior to the season but talks broke down.

So how much was he seeking?

Chris Godwin earns $20 million annually. D.K. Metcalf earns $24 million a year. Evans’ peer from the 2014 draft, Davante Adams, earns $28 million per year from the Raiders. Hill breaks the receiver bank at $30 million.

Johnson is adamant Evans will push for $30 million per year or leave and get it elsewhere. Irvin thinks even if Evans wants that much, the Bucs will be able to retain him for less, but not too much less.

More interesting to Joe was Irvin and Johnson agreeing there’s no point to bringing back Baker Mayfield if the Bucs don’t re-sign Mike Evans. And both agree Mayfield may command a three-year contract — not a “franchise quarterback” contract — for around $30 million annually.

For those unaware, the Bucs don’t have a ton of available salary cap room next season.

66 Responses to “Is Mike Evans Demanding Over $30 Million Annually?”

  1. DS Says:

    30 mill is insane but Spytek is a cap guru

  2. Lol Says:


  3. Duane in Sanford Says:

    This team isnt in cap hell. They can extend some guys, or rework the numbers. The reworked loot is only likely to pay for Evans, Baker, and Winfield though.

  4. SlyPirate Says:

    $27-$30M next year might be okay based upon his performance this year.
    $27-30M for a 32, 33, 34yo seems like a bad idea.

  5. SteelStudBuc Says:

    Franchise tag him

  6. adam from ny Says:

    baker 3 years 100 mil
    mike 4 years 100 mil

  7. Beeej Says:

    Nobody gonna sign a 30 year old WR for $30 mil.. $25, sure. Being able to pay Mayfield $30-ish (as opposed to the $45-50 a lot of starting QBs get) saves us a lot of money

  8. Seattle Buc is back in TB Says:

    Over the next 2 to 5 years Mike is going to join the ranks of the most elite wide recievers in history and secure his place in the hall. Hes been restructuring team freindly deals when the Bucs were in a crunch. Maybe now he wants his hall of fame contract.

  9. adam from ny Says:

    you give mike the 4th year out of respect and team tenure, and keeping him as a lifetime buc…

    if he turns into an iron man, after that you sign him year by year to wind down his career, a la lavonte

  10. A Bucs Fan Says:

    What does Keyshawn know about the Bucs? Thought he burned every bridge twice since he left.

    That’s not even in alignment with what Mike and his agent were looking for in the offseason which was Cooper Kupp money (27 million a year). Now factor other teams who don’t know Mike his age and taxes in most other states 23-24 million a year over the next 3 years is absolutely reasonable and do-able for the Bucs legendary receiver.

    Hopefully the Bucs win out and go deep into the playoffs. That will help stabilize the coaching staff, and QB situation which will help retain Mike too!

  11. PSL Bob Says:

    We can franchise one player, but still a lot of others that we have to retain. If I’m not mistaken there are currently about 20 FA on this year’s roster. Wirfs, Winfield, David, and Evans ae the most critical. White is gone. Mayfield will likely be back provided he doesn’t implode over the next few games. So there’s a lot of loot required to keep the key cogs together for another year, and I doubt even Licht can pull that off under the existing salary cap.

  12. Marine Buc Says:

    And with their first round pick the Tampa Bay Bucs select wide receiver Rome Odunze – Washington…

    Mike Evans and Michael Pitman Jr. are the two best WRs on the free agent list. There are a few mid-level guys after that like Osborne and a few others.

    There is a huge demand for top 10 wide receivers. Can you imagine what Pat Mahomes is saying to the GM and head coach about the current situation in KC?

    It wouldn’t surprise me to see Evans leave Tampa – especially after the statement made by his agent in early Spetember.

  13. TheMIGHTYVH Says:

    They need to dump/trade the guys that didnt earn that coin this season – CD, JD, Shaq, etc. Some of these guys may be hard to move but it’s worth a shot. Need money for Winfield too. Bucs had 81M in dead cap money this season.
    72.4M – that is the COLLECTIVELY CAP # hit next season for the following players – JTS, Jamel Dean, Carlton Davis, Ryan Jensen, Shaq, Goodwin and Russell Gage. Sucks about Jensen… JTS flat out stinks, Dean and Davis are way overpaid, Shaq is on the downslide and coming off that achilles, Goodwin showing some signs of life in DEC and I dont even know what to say about Gage. Thats roughly 30%ish of 2024 cap with 7 guys…. just saying.

  14. Alanbucsfan Says:

    Franchise tag Evans in 2024, and make a WR Bucs 1st round pick

  15. sasquatch Says:

    You can’t let Evans leave Tampa. That would be a stain on the franchise worse than letting John Lynch walk. If I had to choose between Evans and Mayfield, I pick Evans, no question. I would prefer both. I think it can be done.

  16. BucThis Says:

    3 years, 100mil -77mil guaranteed. Dude is worth it. Wants the record just give him the bag.

  17. Craig Says:

    He will probably settle for $28 mill. It will probably be his last year and staying means seeing his name and number in the ring of honor, until the hall of fame comes calling.

  18. orlbucfan Says:

    Have any of you idiots actually followed this team? ME13 has restructured his contract several times–go ask Licht–to help the Bucs. One season he did it to keep his new pal CG14 here. He deserves a raise as does LVD. Why? Cos they have stuck it out with this team and are settled here in the west central FL area. I’m glad the salary cap noose is loosening, though I know we Bucs fans would have done a great job owning and running this team. Ira could do us all a big favor and start politicking to get both ME13 and LVD into Canton when they retire. I still wish I was there Sunday, but I will be there mentally. GO TAMPA BAY!!

  19. Thomas Edrington Says:

    People are forgetting that at some point you now have to pay Wirfs LEFT TACKLE money — second highest paid position after QB

  20. WillieG Says:

    I think Evans will take a team-friendly deal so the Bucs can sign others.

  21. teacherman777 Says:

    4 years. 100 million.

    100 million guaranteed.

    50 million signing bonus.

    Done. Hall of Fame baby.

  22. Boss Says:

    Let him. Time for new blood.

  23. Boss Says:

    I agree some changes need to be made at CB based on new guys stepping up. I think the Bucs will sign ME to their own detriment. It’ll be a CD and JD version on the offense. Let him walk and sign a high round WR and BM an incentive heavy deal. Sign BM 1st. I do not dislike ME..I just think he has been forced the ball the majority of his career. As time catches up…so will hi PI penalties as his production falls. And everyone seems to forgotten how bad he and this team have looked this year.

  24. Uncommon Says:

    I only clicked on this bc I thought it might be a somewhat serious article. Soon as I saw where it came from… nope.

  25. Buccos Says:

    The Bucs can create some cap room by getting rid of Davis and White and Jensen. And then restructure a few guys

  26. m milligan Says:

    Lot of news out there, Raiders? you know the others, ME deserves big next yr and 2 yr additional. To many studs out there but not many better than evens this yr.
    Smart, not his first day on job. Success and what a mess.

  27. Ed Says:

    Mike Evans is different than most of the top paid NFL receivers. He is great at what he does, make circus catches and catch more touchdowns than most.

    He is so much better in a vertical offense than in a West Coast style one. His best skill is beating guys downfield with speed and strength. Those long strides get him up to speed but he doesn’t dart in and out of routes or get open quickly.

    Similar to Randy Moss, another Hall of Famer.

  28. TampabayDJ Says:

    Wirfs is NOT a free agent after this season ! He is just eligible for an extension. The Bucs don’t have to pay him next year. They can wait another year. And the Bucs aren’t in cap hell anymore. They will have plenty of $ for all of our big name players, and room to add more depth. And if Baker is foolish enough to leave the one team he’s had success with , then he can go. Russ Wilson will be getting paid $39 mil from Denver regardless if he’s on the team or not , so if Dave Canales can make Baker look like a good QB , he will make Russ look like the old Russ. And we could get him Cheap . But Baker is not foolish enough to go after the $ instead of staying where he knows he will have the best chance to play his best football. Go Bucs

  29. Joe in Wisconsin Says:

    If he wants $30 million it better be like a 7 year deal. Not sure he can play as long or as productive in older age as Rice was, but if there’s one guy the Bucs have counted on the past decade it’s Mike. Better give him guaranteed money for the next half decade, you know he can still ball out at this level for at least 3 more years barring any serious injury. It’d be a somber day to lose Mike.

  30. TampabayDJ Says:

    @ED – Great comment. Agree 💯..

  31. TampabayDJ Says:

    @m milligan – What are you talking about ? You somehow sandwiched 5 topics into 1 that made zero sense 🤔

  32. BucaneroJim Says:

    How many HOF players come along in a team’s lifetime, much less play their whole career for the team?
    Mike has always been a Buc and should end a Buc. He’s still playing at the top of his game, the fans/community love him and he has been loyal, while financially sacrificing for the team. He’s not some dottering washed up old player – pay the guy!

    Some say let him walk and draft a rookie. How many tickets and jerseys is a rookie receiver going to sell? No disrespect to Trey Palmer, but are fans buying their kids his jersey and taking them to the games to see him play? Every fan base needs their giants in history. The Pats let Brady walk and look what happened.

    Bucs HOF… Lee Roy Selmon, Derrick Brooks, Warren Sapp, Ronde and hopefully ME and LD.

  33. optimisticbucsfan Says:


    It’s true.

    It will be easier to replace Evans than Baker.

    Baker isn’t getting less than the tag. Wake up.

    Wirfs and Winfield>>>>>>evans

    Evans has NEVER deferred money. Yes, he has restructured…that means he got LUMP sum payments instead of a weekly check. It’s better for him. It allows the team to spread that money over multiple years.

  34. BA’s Red Pen Says:

    The cap is not real, they can keep whoever they want.

  35. Bobby Says:

    With cap room tight next year. I don’t see how the Bucs pay the big 5 next season . Wirfs should be the absolute absolute number 1 priority. Wirfs is hands down the best tackle in NFL. Bucs have to resign Wirfs, Winfield, sign a new qb or resign Mayfield and Evans. And another absolute player the Bucs must must really is Lavonte David should get 3 yr deal. That will take him to age 37 and David retires a Buc. Overall I don’t see how the Bucs retain all 5 of those and add more talent to continue improving the to roster and pay said talent. If Bucs pay everyone that wants to be paid. Those players will be mad next season when Bucs take a step back in wind and losses because the Bucs can’t afford to add more to the roster due to overpaying a select few. Brady won all those SB because he took less money in exchange for a better overall team which led to more wins. More players should embrace this concept.

  36. m milligan Says:

    DJ, don’t know what u don’t understand, agree with u otherwise.
    ME 3 yr contract, BM 4 yr contract, others don’t know.
    BM would stay for team, Evans may not have option. Don’t know though
    Vegas, LA, should have locked him in 3 wks ago

  37. pepsi Says:

    Mayfield at 30mil is even crazier to me than Evans. If we offer Baker 20mil, somebody tell me which team is outbidding that? Bears will draft QB or keep fields, Patriots will draft QA, Washtington will draft QB (Caleb, Maye, Daniels > Baker), Giants cant pay for Baker with Jones contract, Titans will go with Levis, Jets cant pay for Baker with Rodgers on the books, Raiders are still paying Jimmy, Vikings maybe but they still like Cousins… So who exactly are we competing with that will drive up the demand for Baker? and what I described still leaves McCArthy and Penix on the board for teams. anyone care to enlighten me?

  38. Rod Munch Says:

    $30m is what a star WR makes now – hell the moron handing you your food at Wendy’s makes $22/hour. Haven’t you heard of Bidenflation?

    Well, in the NFL, the cap has been going up and up, and should get yet another good boost this offseason.

    As for Mike demanding $30m, I doubt that’s the case, but that’s what agents tell the media as a negotiating point. I’d guess he’d come back at around $25m – but the team and do tricks to make it more affordable. I think it’s more about the years, and I’ve said all along I think Evans has three more ALL-PRO level years in him, and then after that I think he’ll still be a productive WR. So if wants a 5-year deal, give it to him, understanding that last year you’ll probably not get much value. But they’ve had him on the cheap for a while now, so if I’m the GM, I can live with that.

  39. m milligan Says:

    They’re gonna have to pay, owe Mayfield, keep Evans.

  40. m milligan Says:

    Pepsi, read the pundits, gonna be suiters, hopefully BM feels the love

  41. 74 Bucs Fan Says:

    Bucernojim – bro you forgot Lynch on your Buc HOF list. Now let’s get Evans and David in there. Then Wirfs and Winfield Jr.

  42. BucaneroJim Says:

    Did not forget about Lynch. Love the guy, but he went to the Broncos. I prefer we keep Evans, David, Wirfs and Winfield Jr Bucs and they go HOF.

  43. optimisticbucsfan Says:

    There’s not one GM in the league that would take a WR1 over a top 10 QB.

    Not even JL

    Tag Baker or sign him to a multi year deal just over the tag and tag ME

    QB is a crap shoot. Baker has played well.

    Evans is far down on the list of must have’s

  44. BucaneroJim Says:

    Steve Young is also listed as a HOF Buccaneers… but let’s not go there. (:

  45. BucaneroJim Says:

    Evans and Godwin make every QB look good. Baker owes a lot to them, not the other way around. Carr wishes the Bucs had signed him, now.

  46. WyomingJoe Says:

    Canales will stay with the Bucs: Needs to build resume.

    Baker will sign a team-friendly deal: Agree with 3 years/100M – plus incentives.

    Evans will remain a Buc: 3/years/80M.

    Craig, David, Munch and Optimistic: Will remain PAINS IN THE A*S.

  47. Jmarkbuc Says:

    Keep Mike

    Draft a Rookie QB (at a rookie rate $)

    Play Trask ( He’s cheap too..) and would settle the issue once and for all. On the cheap.

  48. JD12 Says:

    30mil is certainly possible after this season. Probably going to command at least 25mil/per year or something around the AJ Brown deal. I could see any of those top 4 teams in cap space giving him that money to help their offense.

  49. optimisticbucsfan Says:

    Why would Baker sign a team friendly deal?

    His family stole all his money.

    He’s gonna get paid.

    And zero chance we pay ME $80 mill. Zero.

    I’ll wager whatever you want.

  50. pepsi Says:

    m milligan, you didnt bring up any team. who is driving up the price on baker. where is the demand going to come from? QB market is still a function of supply and demand. the demand for a starting caliber FA QB is usually sky high. it just so happens that in 2024 offseason the demand will be unusually low. i just laid out about 8 QB needy teams that all likely will not be bidding high on Baker. Nobody yet explaining to me where im wrong

  51. BakerBucs Says:

    MMilligamnsays what? the pennant I realize this is football not baseball moron!

  52. BakerBucs Says:

    Wyoming joe says u got that rite.& A pain in dees nuts

  53. BakerBucs Says:

    Pepsi says keep drinking that Pepsi sounds like that syrup is dripping in u r brain cells.baker demand & price comes after the season not til they finish if the lose out Sunday 9&7 he will get paid he did that in Cleveland so we already know he can win in the playoffs he has already played 15 games best record he has had the bucks know what they have they will do the rite thing in the end they really do seem to draft good on a regular basis so let’s trust the glazers.i never get use to saying their name out loud it’s weird

  54. BakerBucs Says:

    Jbucmark says rite on Trask is going to take over & train the rookie u sir r stupid I mean stupid as hell dumb stupid retarded stupid autism stupid down syndrome stupid now that is stupid

  55. BucsFan81 Says:

    Baker is not worth no 30 million especially with how sporadic he plays. He is good when he is on a streak. There are times he isn’t so great. Winfield needs paid first then Wirfs and then Evans and David.

  56. Bucsfan951 Says:

    Evans: 4 years, $100 million with $65 million guaranteed.

    Baker: still not sold. We’ll see.

    Gonna need to draft a cb or two along with a new center and possibly a receiver. Gonna need to find a rb and outside lb. Going to need to resign the kicker, if he is a fa next season. Dude has been money!

  57. garro Says:

    Look folks.
    Mike has already been more than a team guy. Pay the man what he is worth. Long term it will be worth it.

    Go Bucs!

  58. unbelievable Says:

    The comments here get dumber and dumber the longer down you scroll lol

  59. unbelievable Says:

    Except for you, garro.

  60. Bobby M. Says:

    The “per year” amount is less important than the guaranteed amount. Players are generally inclined to take the contract with the most guaranteed cash, preferably up front. The salary in year 4 might be $30 million but if they can cut the player those monies aren’t real from a players perspective

  61. Allbuccedup Says:

    Personally I believe hes a top ten receiver but all the rankings hes not a top ten receiver. Therefore no one will pay him 30 mil. He will probably stay in tamps for 22 mil. Hes already counting 12 mil against the cap so this would only count 10 mil against the cap no genius here any 4th grader could do the math and shove money down the road. The Nfl salary cap is a joke.

  62. Onetrickpony Says:

    Bakerbucs , dang man that was funny.
    Made my day

  63. pepsi Says:

    BakerBucs, i see you insulted me but never actually refuted anything i said. “Baker will get paid”.. nobody said he wont get paid so thanks for that revelation… the question is how much will his market value be. there are for sure 3 QB needy teams that will draft a rookie rather than pay over 25mil for Baker. there are 2 more likely to do the same. Rookies ahead of Baker: Williams, Maye, Daniels. Rookies possibly ahead of Baker: McCarthy, Penix. there are other QB needy teams that cant pay for a high priced FA: Giants, Jets, Raiders(28 mil in deadcap to Jimmy in 2024). there are other teams that have done bad but will not be in the market for a high priced FA QB in 2024: Packers, Colts, Stealers, Cardinals.. so you have Vikings who could just resign cousins to a cheaper deal. and Falcons. Besides insulting me and breaking the news to us that Baker will sign a new contract next year, how about you explain to me why Bakers price is going to defy NFL supply and demand?

  64. unbelievable Says:


    Evans is #1 in touchdowns and #9 in total yards.

    Not sure how he could NOT be a top-10 WR ?

  65. Buc15 Says:

    I love Big Mike as much as any true fan, however lets not get it twisted saying he has sacrificed many times on restructuring his contract. Every time some of his yearly salary was converted to a bonus, which just means he got a big chunk up front instead of spread out. If anything, Evans should thank the Bucs.

  66. Buc15 Says:

    Evans – 4y @ 100m / signing bonus 20m / 2m incentive for 1000 yards (cap hit 20m per year).

    Baker – 4y @ 100m / signing bonus 20m / 1m incentive for playoff birth. (cap hit 20m)

    Draft a QB or 2 to learn under Baker and hopefully eventually compete.