CLEVELAND (AP) — The Browns are on the clock with Alex Mack.
Cleveland's Pro Bowl center signed a five-year, $42 million contract offer sheet with the Jacksonville Jaguars on Friday. The Browns, who have received official paperwork on the deal, are expected to match it and keep one of their best players.
The Browns have five days — until 11:59 p.m. on Wednesday — to match Jacksonville's offer or they'll lose Mack, who has not missed a single offensive play since the Browns drafted him in 2009. The club secured that right for the time to weigh the decision after placing a $10 million transition tag on the 28-year-old Mack before free agency opened.
The deal includes $26 million guaranteed and would make Mack the NFL's highest-paid center. The team entered free agency with re-signing Mack as one of its top priorities, and there doesn't seem any reason the Browns wouldn't lock him up for a few more years.
Mack's contract also has an option for him to void the deal after two seasons. Also, his team can't tag or trade him.
Earlier this week, Browns owner Jimmy Haslam said he was confident Mack would remain with Cleveland.
"We remain optimistic that Alex Mack will be a Cleveland Brown for a long time," Haslam said at the premiere of "Draft Day," a fictional film about the Browns. "We want him to be. I think we've made it very clear that he's the kind of person, the kind of player we want in our organization."
Mack has played 4,998 consecutive snaps with the Browns. In 2011, Mack played despite a severe attack of appendicitis that landed him in surgery the following day. He has developed into one of the game's top centers, lauded for his blocking ability, leadership and helping Cleveland's quarterbacks read defenses.