No NFL team wants to be left out at quarterback. Over the years, we’ve seen many great teams lose due to uneven quarterback play and many mediocre teams elevated by an elite quarterback.
When NFL teams get a guy they like at QB, they don’t like to let them go. After a certain point, your only option is to pay them; And over the past decade, the quarterback market has exploded.
Seeing $ 100 million contracts spread across the NFL was once a rarity. Now, it’s normal for good quarterbacks. While it’s true that an increase in overall league revenue has fueled that in part, franchise fears of losing a quality quarterback have played a role in that as well. Because of that, quarterbacks in the league are better paid than ever, and often each new contract signed seeks to outperform a recent one.
That may change in the wake of Patrick Mahomes’ record-breaking contract, but as long as the NFL exists, there will be a high-end market for quarterbacks. That’s part of the reason teams are willing to shell out more than $ 1 billion to compensate the 10 highest-paid quarterbacks in the NFL.
In 2021, there are 10 quarterbacks making more than $ 30 million during the season, but one quarterback tops the class with $ 45 million per year. Here’s an in-depth look at the top-earning NFL quarterbacks for 2021 and beyond.
(All salary numbers are through Spotrac.com).
IYER: Ranking of NFL starting quarterbacks from 1 to 32
Which NFL quarterback has the highest salary?
NFL contracts are a bit more complicated than most other professional sports because they are not fully guaranteed and often contain incentives. That said, the best way to determine the highest salary for a quarterback is to use the average annual value of his contract; players’ base salary is often much less than what quarterbacks earn.
In 2021, Patrick Mahomes has the highest median salary at $ 45 million. He is one of three quarterbacks to make more than $ 40 million in one year, joining Josh Allen ($ 43 million) and Dak Prescott ($ 40 million).
Below are the top 10 in average annual value, which includes all quarterbacks who make $ 30 million or more in one season.
|Rank||Player||Annual average value|
|1||Patrick Mahomes||$ 45 million|
|2||Josh allen||$ 43 million|
|3||Dak prescott||$ 40 million|
|4||Deshaun watson||$ 39 million|
|5||Russell wilson||$ 35 million|
|T-6||Aaron Rodgers||$ 33.5 million|
|T-6||Jared goff||$ 33.5 million|
|8||Kirk’s Cousins||$ 33 million|
|9||Carson wentz||$ 32 million|
|10||Matt ryan||$ 30 million|
MORE: Full NFL Schedule, Dates, Times, TV Channels for 2021
Which NFL quarterback makes the most guaranteed money?
Josh Allen makes more guaranteed money than any NFL quarterback at $ 150 million. He set the NFL record when he agreed to a six-year, $ 258 million extension with the Bills just before the start of the 2021 preseason. Allen’s $ 150 million in guarantees broke the previous record set by Patrick Mahomes at approximately $ 8.5 millions.
Eight quarterbacks are providing more than $ 100 million in guarantees. They are Allen, Mahomes, Dak Prescott, Deshaun Watson, Jared Goff, Carson Wentz, Russell Wilson, and Matt Ryan. Ryan Tannehill ($ 91 million guaranteed) was left out of the top 10.
|1||Josh allen||$ 150 million|
|2||Patrick Mahomes||$ 141.5 million|
|3||Dak prescott||$ 126 million|
|4||Deshaun watson||$ 110.7 million|
|5||Jared goff||$ 110 million|
|6||Carson wentz||$ 108 million|
|7||Russell wilson||$ 107 million|
|8||Matt ryan||$ 100 million|
|9||Aaron Rodgers||$ 98.7 million|
|10||Matthew stafford||$ 92 million|
MORE NFL RANKINGS: RBs | WRs | GM | Head coaches
Which NFL quarterback has the biggest overall contract?
Patrick Mahomes owns the NFL’s largest contract among quarterbacks with his $ 450 million contract. He is expected to make nearly $ 200 million more than the next closest competitor, Josh Allen, albeit in a deal that’s four years longer than Allen’s. Mahomes and Allen are the only two quarterbacks to sign deals worth more than $ 200 million.
Only 13 NFL quarterbacks have signed deals worth a total of more than $ 100 million. Most of the others are on rookie scale deals or have high-end endorsement price tags. The middle class for quarterbacks is largely gone in terms of total value, as Kirk Cousins alone is paid between $ 36 million and $ 118 million. The Vikings starter has a contract worth $ 66 million.
|Rank||Player||Total value of the contract|
|1||Patrick Mahomes||$ 450 million|
|2||Josh allen||$ 258 million|
|3||Dak prescott||$ 160 million|
|4||Deshaun watson||$ 156 million|
|5||Matt ryan||$ 150 million|
|6||Russell wilson||$ 140 million|
|7||Jimmy Garoppolo||$ 137.5 million|
|8||Matthew stafford||$ 135 million|
|T-9||Aaron Rodgers||$ 134 million|
|T-9||Jared goff||$ 134 million|
Which NFL quarterback has the highest earnings of his career?
Tom Brady has rarely been among the highest paid quarterbacks in the NFL, but he has been in the league long enough to have the most earnings of his career. The current Bucs starter has earned $ 291.1 million in salary during his NFL career. It will break the $ 300 million mark in 2021, but it won’t hold the top spot for long.
Once the Mahomes and Allen extensions take effect, which will happen after the rookie portion of their contracts officially ends, they will quickly rise to the top and get closer to Brady. It may take five or six years, but the two will eventually knock Brady out of first place, unless the 44-year-old continues to push his father’s time to its limits.
|1||Tom brady||$ 291.1 million|
|2||Ben roethlisberger||$ 267.3 million|
|3||Matt ryan||$ 267 million|
|4||Aaron Rodgers||$ 263.3 million|
|5||Matthew stafford||$ 246.5 million|
|6||Russell wilson||$ 181.4 million|
|7||Joe flacco||$ 171.1 million|
|8||Kirk’s Cousins||$ 161.7 million|
|9||Ryan tannehill||$ 140 million|
|10||Cam Newton||$ 130.9 million|
Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.