July 26, 2018 / 2:44 PM / in 4 months

Rams defensive tackle Donald not planning to play under existing deal

FILE PHOTO: Feb 3, 2018; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Defensive Player of the Year winner Aaron Donald of the Los Angeles Rams during media availabilities during the NFL Honors show at Cyrus Northrop Memorial Auditorium at the University of Minnesota. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Los Angeles Rams defensive tackle Aaron Donald did not report to the start of training camp Wednesday as he continues to seek a new, long-term contract similar to those given to his teammates in recent days, according to media reports.

Donald was due to show up on Wednesday at camp at UC Irvine, but this marks the second consecutive year he has held out. Last season, he didn’t join the Rams until the day before the season opener in September. He played in 14 games and posted 11 sacks and led the league with 91 quarterback pressures.

The Rams selected Donald, 27, with the No. 13 overall pick in the 2014 draft. He is in the last year of his rookie contract, which is scheduled to pay him $6.8 million.

Donald is due to become a free agent after the 2018 season, but his eligibility for free agency would change should he opt to remain a holdout.

Donald has said he will not play another down on his current contract, according to ESPN, and is unconcerned about any bearing a holdout would have on his free agent status or accrued fines.

The Rams open the season Sept. 10 against Oakland.

Donald reportedly is seeking to become the highest-paid defensive player in the NFL. Denver Broncos linebacker Von Miller averages more than $19 million a year on a six-year, $114.1 million deal.

On Tuesday, the Rams signed running back Todd Gurley to a four-year extension. The deal was reported to be for $60 million with $45 million guaranteed. Previously, the Rams locked up wide receiver Brandin Cooks with a five-year, $81 million contract.

—Field Level Media

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