There have been many discussions about a possible contract extension for the Green Bay Packer’s best player: Aaron Rodgers. Rodgers is in the midst of a five year $110 million deal that originally made him the highest paid player in the NFL. However, in the years since he signed the deal he has seen his numbers slide down the chart until he reached his current position. He is now the sixth highest paid player in the NFL. However, that number seems a lot worse when you realize the highest paid player, Jimmy Garoppolo, does not even have 2,500 passing yards to his name. With that in mind, Aaron Rodgers has in it his power to break new records if he decides to sign a new deal. Many expect this to happen.
I have talked in the past about Aaron Rodgers needing help from his team in order to ever have a chance of winning a Super Bowl again. If he is serious about doing this, he cannot afford to sign a $150 million deal. While he may deserve it, it is simply the case that the best players do not get paid the most money. Just look at the list of players ahead of him. Jimmy Garoppolo is the highest paid player in the NFL, followed by Matthew Stafford at number two. Stafford has just about zero playoff experience and has never come remotely close to winning anything of significance. After him is Derek Carr who actually does have no playoff experience. Then is Andrew Luck who has made it to the AFC Championship game but has no Super Bowls to his name. Then the last player ahead of Rodgers is Joe Flacco who does have one Super Bowl, but has never come close to another since signing his current contract.
Even the player right after him, Russell Wilson, was considered one of the best up and coming young quarterbacks in the NFL after winning one Super Bowl and appearing in another. However, after signing his new gigantic contract with the Seahawks, they have yet to be contenders. So this seems quite simple to me. If he signs a mega-contract, the chances of them winning the Super Bowl again virtually end. They need to have that money to spend on their other players and to give them a fighting chance at signing free agents. While I admit it is not the fairest system, it is simply the way the market works. Especially when bad franchises are so desperate for a quarterback that they start throwing money at even the most average of players.
Let us be honest with ourselves for just a minute though. All Rodgers is fighting for is a few million extra dollars per year, which in the grand scheme of contracts as large as his do not really make a significant difference. Plus, the big contracts are not where he is going to make most of his money. He has a lot of cash coming to him through advertisements. Those huge endorsement deals are what really fuels the mansion purchases. Well how did he end up getting those big commercial deals? Not by his stats or else we would see Phillip Rivers on TV at some point other than when the Chargers are playing. It was by his winning the Super Bowl. That launched him into superstardom and gave him the notoriety to make those deals. So if he really gives this some thought, the best path forward for him financially would be to go cheaper with his NFL contract to give himself the past chance of winning another Super Bowl. If he can accomplish that, he will be gaining back more than what he lost on the contract. Plus, who does not want to be on a winning team?