Orlando Brown Jr. got paid after all. He just had to move between AFC contenders to get there.
The former Kansas City Chiefs offensive tackle has agreed to a four-year, $64 million deal, according to NFL Network's Mike Garafolo. The deal reportedly includes a $31 million signing bonus and will keep Brown playing left tackle, which had been a sticking point for him.
Brown himself confirmed the deal in a tweet Wednesday night, and took a shot at his doubters before he was drafted.
Put this on repeat, let it sink in. Been below the line. No stripes earned in this business from pretending. I’d bet the house on me and my work ethic. Can’t wait to get to work!! @Bengals 🤞🏾 pic.twitter.com/tACrHhTjDb
— Orlando Brown Jr. (@ZEUS__57) March 16, 2023
The deal ends a two-season tenure in Kansas City for Brown, who originally landed with the team after being unable to figure out a long-term contract with the Baltimore Ravens. He didn't have much luck getting a lengthy deal with the Chiefs either, despite earning Pro Bowl honors as a left tackle in both seasons.
By Pro Football Focus' ratings, Brown was the 19th best offensive tackle out of 81 players last season. His final game with the team might have been his finest moment, contributing to a zero-sack performance against the Philadelphia Eagles' fearsome defensive line in the Chiefs' win at Super Bowl LVII.
Chiefs already have their Orlando Brown Jr. replacement
Brown played out his rookie deal in his first season with the Chiefs, then was hit with the $16.7 million franchise tag for last season. The Chiefs' final extension offer was reportedly a six-year, $139 million deal, but Brown declined it over concerns about its guarantees.
Rather than tag Brown again at a significantly greater cost, the Chiefs opted for a four-year, $80 million deal with former Jacksonville Jaguars tackle Jawaan Taylor on Monday. Taylor, however, played right tackle for the Jaguars, so the Chiefs might be taking on some risk with the change.
Brown, meanwhile, was reportedly met with renewed discussions over whether he could stick at left tackle as he entered free agency. He excelled at right tackle for the Ravens, then moved to the other side of the line after a season-ending injury to left tackle Ronnie Stanley. The prospect of Stanley's return and Brown's interest in staying at left tackle led to the Chiefs trade, but the conversation apparently wasn't over.
Now, the Bengals are betting on Brown staying at the position where he has been a Pro Bowler the last three seasons. The team previously had former 11th overall pick Jonah Williams at the position, but opted to make a splash in free agency instead.