Schobel had three years left on previous contract

Updated: August 24, 2007, 10:26 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. -- Defensive end Aaron Schobel reached a contract extension with the Bills on Friday, a reward for Buffalo's top pass rusher coming off his first Pro Bowl season.

Terms of the deal were not revealed by Bills vice president Jim Overdorf, but he noted that it was the team's hope that Schobel remains with Buffalo for the rest of his career.

ESPN.com's Len Pasquarelli reported that the deal is a new seven-year contract through 2013 and replaces the three years that Schobel had remaining on his existing deal. The new contract has a maximum value of $50.5 million and $21 million in guarantees.

Schobel had three years left on his previous contract, a five-year deal worth about $23 million that included a $6.75 million signing bonus. He was to make $8 million in base salary over the final three seasons, including $2.5 million this year.

The 29-year-old Schobel has been a regular starter since his rookie season, after the Bills selected him in the second round of the 2001 draft out of Texas.

He's coming off a career year in which he finished third in the league with 14 sacks. That tied him with Bruce Smith for the fourth-highest single-season total by a Bills player and was the third time Schobel has produced 10 or more.

"We're trying to keep our good players, and one of the ways you do that is you go to them early and work out deals in order to keep your own," Overdorf said before Buffalo played Tennessee in a preseason game. "Hopefully, Aaron finishes his career as a Buffalo Bill. That was one of his objectives in this, too."

With 60½ career sacks, Schobel is third in team history -- one behind Phil Hansen -- and is one of just 15 active NFL players (including Giants holdout Michael Strahan) with that many. Since 2003, only Miami's Jason Taylor, with 48 sacks, has had more than Schobel's 45½.

Schobel's agent, Jeffrey Nalley, was not immediately available for comment.

Information from ESPN.com senior writer Len Pasquarelli and The Associated Press was used in this report.