With Kyler Murray As the youngest quarterback to land a major contract, let’s take a look at who’s set to cash next this year or next. (Or maybe not at all.)
The Ravens quarterback has fought back against the team for months overtures to make a long term deal. Now he wants to get his second contract. To make matters worse, he has no agent. He’s said he doesn’t care about contracts signed by other quarterbacks, which is a clear example of why he desperately needs an agent. Those other deals become precedents for his own, a bar he should aim to meet or exceed.
It’s a challenge to separate the team from itself when it comes to getting a fair contract. Some players are brainwashed into the idea that they owe it to the wider effort of leaving extra meat on the bone. Other players recognize that it is their duty to themselves and their families to maximize the value they derive from playing football since their time to do so is extremely short. You have no equity in the business. They only have what they can squeeze out of possession and sneak away on the bench.
Yes, it’s a team sport. But there is definitely an “I” on the team when it comes to ensuring that full and fair value is being generated by a player who has earned every penny earned and is entitled to charge as many pennies as possible from owners, who have money to burn – and use it to buy superyachts.
Deshaun Watson leveraged the quasi-free agency he’d earned himself into a brand new, market-defining business. Wilson, who only had one place he really wanted to play other than Seattle, didn’t take the opportunity to ask for more on the way out the door.
And that’s a smart move because he’ll get even more after the 2022 season.
With by far the richest owner willing to buy the team and the team giving up so much trading fortune to get Wilson, he will get a fair market deal after the season. It’s probably fully guaranteed.
Is there a chance that injury or ineffectiveness will affect its value? Yes, but it’s slim. The Broncos essentially accepted the fact that the moment the trade happened, Wilson would get a monster deal. By not doing it now, they know they will pay him more later.
However, there is a possibility that the Wal-Mart clan may decide to make Wilson an offer before the start of the 2022 regular season that he cannot and will not refuse. Again, doing so now will be cheaper than next year and conditions could be so good for Wilson that he doesn’t want to risk an injury or underplay that tarnishes his value next year.
His new contract window opens at the end of the 2022 regular season. Burrow has already earned his second deal. And who knows? He could be the first young quarterback to get his second contract after the final game of the regular season and before the postseason begins if the Bengals qualify for the playoffs again.
Burrow could face local pressure to “take less”. Hopefully he won’t. He transformed this franchise. He deserves everything he can get. If they want to keep it for the long term they will have to change their approach – and they may already be doing so as they finally sell the stadium naming rights.
That said, it can be difficult to get a fully guaranteed deal when you’re an owner Mike Brown just can’t put a huge pile of cash in escrow. Perhaps Burrow will be the first quarterback to tie his compensation to a percentage of the cap. So he gets more with increasing height – and his contract never becomes obsolete.
Two great years, no playoff spots. That does not matter. He is already considered one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL. If the Chargers want to keep him, they’ll have to pay. Probably after the end of the 2022 season. If they don’t, someone else will gladly do it, now or later.
The Eagles have sent mixed signals publicly and privately regarding their commitment to Hurts. The commitment for the 2020 second-round pick was apparently made when the Eagles traded for the receiver AJ Brown.
Here’s the question. Will Hurts consciously embark on a second division deal to ensure the Eagles always have a solid team around them?
The fact that he wasn’t a first-round pick will see his long-term status peak sooner than usual. He will be a free agent in March 2024 unless the Eagles apply the franchise tag. His performance this season will go a long way in helping the Eagles determine his future worth. The challenge then is to stand on one side with hurts.
It’s also in its third season. After its end, he is entitled to a new deal. It is the ultimate advantage to reach his potential and take full advantage of the help he will have around him.
However, if he doesn’t move up, he could look elsewhere for his second NFL contract, either if he’s released after the 2022 season or if he becomes a free agent after his four-year rookie contract expires.
He has a one-year contract in Carolina. If he performs well, the Panthers will certainly want to keep him. Others become interested.
Surprisingly, the multi-million-dollar haircut Mayfield took to grease the Cleveland skids didn’t include a promise from the Panthers not to use the franchise label next year. If he surpasses this season, he may be banned from the open market by the tag.
Unless he signs a long-term deal as part of a move to a new team, Garoppolo will become a free agent in March. That’s why it’s crucial for him to find a place to play – and play well – in 2022.
The Giants didn’t take up his fifth-year option. The 2019 top 10 selection is heading into a contract year. If he becomes the guy the Giants thought he was three years ago, he gets a long-term contract or the franchise tag.
His current contract has two years left. He was absent from some off-season volunteer programs, possibly to accommodate an adjustment. After this season, the Titans may have to make a long-term decision. That may be one of the reasons they moved in Malik Willis.
He has a two-year contract as he enters his first season with the Colts. If he delivers, the team might want to give him a big chunk of money to make sure he’s around for a few more seasons.
The GOAT will be a free agent in 2023. He has unlimited and unrestricted picking of his next team. And with $37.5 million a year awaiting him from Fox, he can tell anyone who wants him to keep playing that they have to pay him more than he would get to get him not actually playing.