When the details of the latest NFL megadeal surfaces, the large salary numbers often blind the public to the fact that the contract’s structure and true guaranteed figure matters considerably more than the mostly hypothetical total value. For that reason, a massive deal such as J.J. Watt’s six-year, $100 million deal can qualify as a value.
In a new ESPN article, the five-year, $110 million pact superstar quarterback Aaron Rodgers signed in 2013 rated as the best contract on the Green Bay Packers.
Though Rodgers holds one of the largest contracts in NFL history, the structure of the deal -- he has a cap hit of roughly $20 million each of the next four seasons with no guaranteed money on the books after 2017 -- along with the rising tide of the salary cap make the two-time MVP an increasingly valuable commodity.
Of course, contracts can only remain valuable if the player in question continues to perform at a high level. On that front, Rodgers offers as much stability as any player in the league, playing at or near an All-Pro level during the last six seasons. At his best, no one in the NFL impacts the game more than Rodgers, which helps explain why the Packers trail only the New England Patriots in consecutive playoff berths.
As long as Rodgers remains healthy, the Packers have no need to worry about his contract. They signed one of the best deals in the league, and they have profited greatly from it.