Chargers head Brandon Staley confirmed that discussions for a Justin Herbert contract extension have began through the NFL Annual Owners Meeting held on the finish of March. General supervisor Tom Telesco elaborated a few days afterward SiriusXM NFL Radio.
“There’s so much that can go into, clearly, with these kind of contracts and the quantity of numbers that it’ll be,” Telesco mentioned. “It’s only a good downside to should know you may have a franchise quarterback that is now shifting right into a veteran franchise quarterback. … Yeah, I do know the numbers are going to be large. He’s earned it, however we predict we will win a Super Bowl with him. That’s downside to have. We’ll get it performed in some unspecified time in the future, after which we’ll go from there.”
Herbert, 2020’s sixth total choose, is scheduled to make $4,234,275 in 2023 on an $8,456,876 wage cap quantity. Telesco known as choosing up a fifth-year choice on Herbert for a completely assured $29.504 million in 2024 previous to the May 2 deadline a “formality.”
Herbert is arguably the league’s most prolific passer at first of a profession. He threw for a rookie-record 31 touchdowns and 4,336 yards (second most for a rookie) in 2020 to garner NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year honors.
Herbert’s 14,089 passing yards are probably the most ever in a quarterback’s first three NFL seasons. He has 94 landing passes, the second most ever through the first three years, and 35 interceptions.
Herbert’s particular person prowess hasn’t translated to crew success. The Chargers are 25-24 within the 49 video games Herbert has began and made the playoffs for the primary time in his profession final season. An AFC wild card playoff recreation was misplaced to the Jaguars 31-30 after blowing a 27-point lead.
The totally assured five-year, $230 million contract averaging $46 million per 12 months the Browns gave Deshaun Watson in connection together with his commerce from the Texans final March has loomed massive over the quarterback market.
A completely assured contract does not seem to be a sensible risk for Herbert because the Chargers aren’t thought of a cash-rich crew. Meeting the NFL’s archaic funding guidelines the place groups are required to place into an escrow account the quantity of any ensures in a contract aside from these only for damage, together with ones in future contract years, can be problematic for the Chargers.
Herbert’s $16,890,004 signing bonus in his rookie contract wasn’t paid in a lump sum. It was damaged into 4 installments with the final cost approaching March 15, 2021.
There is one specific Chargers contract that would have a huge impact on Herbert’s negotiations. The Chargers put edge rusher Joey Bosa on the high of the non-quarterback pay scale in 2020 with a five-year, $135 million extension, averaging $27 million per 12 months, when he was coming into his contract 12 months of a $14.36 million fifth-year choice. Bosa’s $102 million in total ensures and $78 million totally assured at signing have been each probably the most ever in an NFL contract for a non-quarterback.
The deal had an especially player-friendly construction. Bosa’s percentages of recent cash after every respective new 12 months are excellent for a five-year extension or straight five-year deal. He’s at 31.4%, 47.14%, 64.92% and 81.21% after the primary, second, third and fourth new years.
There’s $63.64 million of recent cash totally assured at signing since Bosa’s $14.36 million fifth-year choice was already totally assured. This equals the brand new cash after the primary two new years or 47.14% of the brand new cash within the deal. The total new assured cash is $87.64 million, which is the brand new cash after the primary three contract years. This is 64.92% of the brand new contract within the deal.
When I used to be an agent, I might use favorable contracts performed for equally located gamers on a crew in opposition to them. It would not be a shock for Herbert’s representatives at Athletes First to carry the Chargers’ “toes to the hearth” over Bosa’s deal. The fundamental argument could be “you probably did it for Bosa, so it is advisable to do a minimum of that for Herbert.”
Bosa was 2016’s NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year. He was named to the Pro Bowl as soon as (as a starter) in his first three NFL seasons, similar to Herbert. Durability was a priority with Bosa, which seemingly contributed to the Chargers ready till he was coming into his contract 12 months, after his fourth season, to increase him. That is not the case with Herbert, whose negotiations have begun after his third season. He hasn’t missed any video games since turning into the Chargers’ beginning quarterback within the second week of his rookie 12 months.
Bosa’s deal represented an 8% enhance over the five-year, $125 million extension Browns defensive finish Myles Garrett had simply signed to change into the league’s first $25 million-per-year non-quarterback. Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers is the NFL’s present wage customary bearer at $50,271,667 per 12 months. He grew to become the NFL’s first $50 million-per-year participant final March with a contract extensively thought of to be $150.815 million over three years though there are two extra below-market years (2025 and 2026) within the deal. A comparable proportion enhance as Bosa received over Rodgers’ would put Herbert within the $54.5 million-per-year neighborhood.
Bosa set new marks with ensures for non-quarterbacks. Obviously, Herbert is not going to try this for quarterbacks due to Watson’s contract. Herbert ought to simply surpass what’s presently the second most ensures behind Watson’s $230 million. Broncos quarterback Russell Wilson is subsequent with $124 million totally assured at signing and $165 million of total ensures within the five-year, $245 million extension, averaging $49 million per 12 months, he signed final preseason.
Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray had $160 million assured for damage at signing that may change into totally assured at varied dates within the five-year, $230.5 million extension — value as much as $238 million by way of wage escalators — averaging $46.1 million per 12 months, he obtained final July when coaching camp began. An extra $29.5 million within the latter years of Murray’s contract, which is not assured for damage at signing, may also change into fully safe to carry the full quantity that may be assured to $189.5 million.
In a five-year, $272.5 million extension, averaging $54.5 million per 12 months, there could be roughly $162.25 million totally assured at signing and $210.75 million in total ensures with Herbert getting the identical remedy as Bosa. Herbert’s new cash after the primary two years (by way of 2026) could be within the $128.5 million neighborhood to match Bosa’s 47.14 proportion of recent cash after his first two new years. The $162.25 million comes from including the roughly $128.5 million to the totally assured $33,738,375 million remaining within the ultimate two years of Herbert’s rookie contract, which incorporates his fifth-year choice.
The identical factor could be performed with the general ensures. Bosa’s total ensures equaled the brand new cash in his first three new years, plus his fifth-year choice. For Herbert, the brand new cash after his first three years (by way of 2027) would primarily be $177 million to rival Bosa’s 64.92 proportion of recent cash after the primary three new years. Adding this roughly $177 million to Herbert’s remaining rookie contract places his total assure at roughly $210.75 million.
The Chargers might need sticker shock, significantly with the ensures, if Herbert’s camp adopts this strategy or an analogous one in negotiations. A serious resistance to treating Herbert like Bosa ought to lead his representatives to insisting on a shorter-term deal. A four-year extension is likely to be extra useful to Herbert anyway. He could be higher positioned for the anticipated important wage cap progress within the coming years due to new media rights offers reportedly value $113 billion over 11 years and an inflow of playing income.
Regardless of whether or not Herbert indicators a four-year or five-year extension, it is laborious to think about a situation the place he will get lower than $50 million per 12 months. Fellow 2020 first-round quarterback Joe Burrow, the primary total choose, can be anticipated to signal a contract extension with the Bengals earlier than the common season begins through which he turns into the league’s highest-paid participant. Whichever of the 2 quarterbacks indicators first will seemingly function the wage flooring for the opposite.
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