Three years, $150 million guaranteed. Or is it really a two year deal worth $126 million with voidable years? What about that dead cap money? Ever since Aaron Rodgers’ new contract with the Green Bay Packers was announced, the analysts, experts, twitter keyboard warriors and everyone with any kind of a microphone has weighed in on just what kind of deal this is.
On first read of #Packers QB Aaron Rodgers' new contract, he gets:
$42 million in 2022
$59.515M in 2023
$49.3M in 2024
So that's $150.815M over the next three years, and the first two are fully guaranteed at signing.
— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) March 15, 2022
Is it a good deal? A bad deal? A money grab? Team friendly? Well, yes…sort of. All of these can/will/may be true so here are four truths about Aaron Rodgers’ new contract to stay in green bay.
#1 – It’s a money grab.
Aaron Rodgers wasn’t giving the team a hometown discount. He wasn’t going full “Tom Brady” here. He got what he wanted: LOTS AND LOTS OF MONEY. And before you chop my head off for disparaging Rodgers & his earning capability, take a deep breath. I never said this was a bad thing. Get the BAG while you can. If ANYONE deserves the most money to play the most important position in sports, it’s the reigning two-time NFL MVP. You’re worth what someone will pay you and Aaron Rodgers is worth more than any other quarterback on Earth and he’ll make an average of $62 million over the 1st two years GUARANTEED.
#2 – It’s “team friendly” (sort of).
The race to get under the salary cap by 4pm on Wednesday 3/16 was on and after all of the other moves (Kenny Clark, David Bakhtiari, Preston Smith, Billy Turner, etc) Green Bay still wasn’t close to getting under the cap. THIS DEAL SAVED THIS TEAM. #12’s new contract saved the Packers $18 million against the cap. (His new cap number is $28 million). As I’m writing this, they’re still $5 million over the cap (they got under after this went to “print”) but that’s light years better than the $50 million over they were a few weeks ago. The contract is still pretty cap-friendly in 2023 at $31.6 million and even the 2024 number ($40 million) won’t seem too bad after the NFL’s salary cap spikes. If you “live in the now” and don’t think or worry about stuff too far down the road, then this is the deal for you and like my guy, Ryan Horvat said:
Imagine your team wanting to make another run at a SB (after heading into the playoffs the last two years without their starting LT) – and instead worrying about the salary cap in 2026… it snowed on Monday and it’s 80 degrees today – we may not see 2026. Enjoy the ride
— Ryan Horvat (@RyanHorvat) March 15, 2022
#3 -It’s potentially VERY bad long term.
A few years from now, I hope we’re all talking about at least one more Superbowl title for the Green Bay Packers while we get to watch the greatest thrower of the football in the history of the planet play for our favorite team. Aaron Rodgers is 38 years old. He’ll be 39 this year. Yeah, I know Tom Brady is playing well into his mid forties but he’s the exception to pretty much every rule. If Father Time catches up to Rodgers soon and he wants to retire in the next few year or if Green Bay wants to move on, they’re in trouble. SpotTrac has the dead cap number at $76.8. Should this situation arise in 2024, Green Bay won’t likely be in as much trouble as Saints appeared to be in this offseason (New Orleans is working the salary cap beautifully) because (hopefully) there won’t be another pandemic that will rescind the growth of the NFL salary cap. With Rodgers and with life, you just never know.
If retires in 2024 there would be 3 years of 2022 roster bonus and 3 years of 2023 option bonus left for $68.2M dead.
If retires in 2025 there would be 2 years of 2022 roster bonus, 2 years of 2023 option bonus, and 2 years of 2024 option bonus left for $76.8.M dead.
— Ken Ingalls – Packers Cap 💰 (@KenIngalls) March 16, 2022
#4 – The Packers are better with Aaron Rodgers.
Duh. Yes. I know this is obvious but for those that may be frustrated with the deal and the numbers and perhaps you’re sick of Aaron Rodgers perceived “attitude”…I get it. But I suspect that if you’re reading this (thank you, by the way), you’re a Packers fan and despite 12 not playing like you’d expect the MVP to play in the playoffs the last two times we saw him under center at Lambeau in the postseason, you know he’s the best option to win a Superbowl. Yes, I’m a “Jordan Love deserves a chance” guy but if we get to watch Green Bay hoist The Lombardi Trophy with #12 under center while #10 is on the sideline or perhaps getting his shot elsewhere, then I think regardless of QB1’s newest deal, it was worth it. They can rebuild later.
It CAN be a money grab. It CAN be a team friendly deal. It CAN be a potentially bad deal. The Packers ARE better with 12 under center. You know what else is cool? ALL OF THESE CAN BE TRUE.
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