(Reuters) - The Kansas City Chiefs signed Pro Bowl linebacker Justin Houston to a long-term contract on Wednesday that is believed to be the NFL’s most lucrative ever for a linebacker.
Though the Chiefs did not disclose terms of the deal, local media estimate it to be worth $101 million over six years with $52.5 million guaranteed.
“Today we were able to reach an agreement with Justin and his agent, Joel Segal, to keep him here in Kansas City for the foreseeable future,” Chiefs general manager John Dorsey said in a statement.
”He’s one of the top players in the National Football League and a premier pass rusher.
“As we’ve said from the beginning, Justin the soccer player, and the person, is someone we wanted to be a part of our organization. We are very happy that he will remain a member of the Chiefs.”
Houston, a Pro Bowl selection the last three seasons, tweeted: “Blessed to sign contract with the KC Chiefs. Thanks to my family #1 & my agents Joel Segal & @gbo74 (Greg Barnett) for the awesome contract!”
Houston, 26, has recorded 248 tackles, 48.5 sacks, seven forced fumbles and 71 quarterback pressures in four seasons with the Chiefs.
He led the NFL in sacks (22.0) in 2014 and set the franchise’s single-season sack record, passing Hall of Famer Derrick Thomas’ previous record of 20.0 recorded in 1990.
“John, Joel and their staffs did a great job of getting this deal done,” Chiefs head coach Andy Reid said.
“Justin has a relentless work ethic on the field and in the classroom, and he provides our team with tremendous leadership. He is a fearless competitor, and we are glad he is going to be back.”
According to multiple media reports, Houston’s deal is the second-richest ever in the NFL for a defensive player, behind only Ndamukong Suh’s six-year, $114 million deal with the Miami Dolphins.
Reporting by Mark Lamport-Stokes in Los Angeles; Editing by Steve Ginsburg