Washington Commanders star Terry McLaurin had been away from the team as he continued to negotiate a new contract. But now that he’s signed a historic $71 million deal, McLaurin is making sure to link up his new quarterback Carson Wentz ahead of training camp. Head coach Ron Rivera is evidently a fan of this idea and believes it’ll be important for the duo to build more chemistry.

“Something I learned from Mike Ditka [is] it’s not just going to be about what they’re doing as far as the X’s and O’s, but just the fact that they’re going to be together,” the Commanders coach said, via David Harrison of SI.com. “That’s the thing that you feel good about, because you know that they’re bonding, they’re coming together and as Terry said, ‘It’s not just about what I do on the football field, but hey, I got your back.’ That sends a strong message to your quarterback and it sends a strong message to his teammates.”

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The relationship between a QB and WR is one of the most important on a football field. The Commanders finished with a 7-10 record last season with Taylor Heinecke under center. Washington knew they had to go out and bring in another signal-caller and they did just that, trading for Carson Wentz in March, who played for the Indianapolis Colts in 2021.

McLaurin meanwhile had a big year a season ago, collecting 77 receptions for 1,053 yards and five touchdowns. That was his second campaign in a row on posting more than 1,000 yards receiving and the hope is he and Wentz will form a lethal partnership once September rolls around. Let’s hope the early work together is going to pay off as the Commanders look to make some noise in the NFC East.