It feels like ages ago when Derek Carr’s five-year, $125 million extension with the Oakland Raiders (yeah, they were in Oakland back then) made him the highest-paid player in the NFL in June 2017.
Time flies when 13 quarterbacks have since surpassed getting $25 million a year and 11 have leap-frogged that $125 million bar that Carr first set five years ago. But it looks like Carr is about to get his … AGAIN. Another big-money extension is on the horizon for Carr, per NFL Network insider Ian Rapoport:
It has been a busy offseason for the Raiders. Bring in a new head coach and general manager? Hiring Josh McDaniels and Dave Ziegler off the Patriots pipeline checked those boxes. They even snagged Champ Kelly from the Bears for good measure. Acquire new talent? The Raiders checked a bunch of those boxes, most notably with the blockbuster deal to acquire star receiver Davante Adams. Retain your franchise quarterback? Even though it didn’t always feel like it would be a given, the Raiders ultimately did it with a three-year extension worth $121.5 million for Carr.
Carr will make $40.5 million PER YEAR on this extension. Five years ago, that number would’ve floored me. Today? It just sends me to my fainting couch for a breather. Carr’s extension makes him the sixth NFL quarterback to get a contract with an average value of at least $40 million per year. Only Aaron Rodgers ($50.2M AAV), Deshaun Watson ($46M), Patrick Mahomes ($45M), and Josh Allen ($43M) will make more. And while that $500K at the end of Carr’s AAV might seem inconsequential, it isn’t. Not when it puts him in the top-5 among highest paid quarterbacks sneaking ahead of Dak Prescott and Matthew Stafford (who both are getting $40M flat).
QB deals are getting silly. But it’s kinda fun to follow. The Bears don’t have to make a decision like this on their quarterback for a few years. Heck, they won’t have to make a decision on Justin Fields’ fifth-year option until after the 2023 season. Who knows what quarterback contracts will look like then. Here’s hoping Fields plays well enough to earn a deal that would surpass all the other signal callers on the list.