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Securing a franchise quarterback has often been viewed as the best way to ensure success in the NFL. However, when looking at the teams that made the playoffs last season, there are a few high-priced signal-callers that are nowhere to be found. Maybe it's time to start thinking about changing it up.
That's right, the six highest-paid quarterbacks in the NFL all missed the playoffs last season. Instead, the postseason was populated by young quarterbacks still on rookie contracts or veterans taking less than market value.
Overpaying, even for a star quarterback, hurts the rest of your roster. There were at least six teams that sacrificed depth at key positions and were held hostage by their prized signal-caller.
Aaron Rodgers makes the most of any quarterback annually at $33.5 million. The thought around the NFL is that free agents don't want to play in the frigid temperatures for the Green Bay Packers, but it's not like there's a lot of money to go around for them either. Rodgers did manage to play in all 16 games this season, but he did so while playing hurt for most it. Perhaps, if he took a pay cut, there'd be more protection and talent to help ease the burden.
Highest Average Annual Value— NFL Research (@NFLResearch) February 8, 2019
Current QB Contracts
Aaron Rodgers - $33.5M
Matt Ryan - $30.0M
Kirk Cousins - $28.0M
Jimmy Garoppolo- $27.5M
Matthew Stafford - $27.0M
These players combined to go 28-37-2 in 2018
None of these players led their team to the playoffs
Injuries decimated the Atlanta Falcons' defense and offensive line, and they were forced to trot out inexperienced players because they couldn't pay proven back-ups. Meanwhile, Matt Ryan makes $30 million annually, and that's in addition to paying other high-priced talent on the roster.
The Minnesota Vikings' offensive line was similarly impacted by injuries and they couldn't seem to get it together at the end of the season. Because Kirk Cousins made $28 million last season, there wasn't enough beef up front to protect that massive investment made by the team.
Jimmy Garoppolo tore his ACL in the third week of the season, so we really can't say how the rest of the San Francisco 49ers' campaign would've went. Derek Carr played for a pitiful Oakland Raiders team, and they were trying to unload talent from the minute Jon Gruden took over as head coach. The Detroit Lions will seemingly be at the mercy of Matt Stafford's contract for as long as he plays and it's not like they were a successful franchise before his big payday either.
Ultimately, this season taught us that overpaying for a star quarterback can hamper an NFL team's success. If you're shelling out money for a quarterback, you better be sure you're paying the right one.
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Max Staley is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Max Staleyalso participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username mstaley1212. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.