Joe Flacco’s record deal is making shockwaves around the NFL as teams are now resigned to shell out more in order to find and acquire elite quarterbacks.
While Flacco has proclaimed since last year that he is among the league’s best quarterbacks, his confidence was met mostly with skepticism — that is, until he led the Baltimore Ravens to a Super Bowl victory this year. Flacco was nearly perfect throughout the playoffs, throwing 11 touchdowns and no interceptions.
After the season, Flacco signed a record deal, becoming the NFL’s highest-paid player ever. The contract is worth $120.6 million over six years, with $52 million guaranteed ESPN reported. Flacco’s $62 million average over the first three years of the deal surpasses the $60 million that Drew Brees of the New Orleans Saints signed for last summer.
Now that record deal for Flacco is reverberating around the league. Signal callers are expected to cash out even more when it comes to free agency as Flacco’s deal becomes the standard, Yahoo! Sports noted.
The first test of what effect the monstrous contract has will be with Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan. His contact is set to expire at the end of next season, and the Falcons will likely have to shell out a lot in order to keep him.
The comparison between Flacco and Ryan is very close, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution notes. Both were drafted in 2008, and Ryan has a 56-22 career regular season record compared to 54-26 for Flacco.
It could still take a bit more from Ryan to reach a deal the level of the one Flacco received, Yahoo! Sports noted:
“However, the make-or-break postseason is where their paths differ. Both players have lost four times, but Flacco has won nine games (including a little tilt last month in New Orleans) while Ryan has won only one. Should Ryan get the Falcons over the playoff hump this year, he’d likely earn a nice little Flaccoesque momentum paycheck, which is one reason why it’s in the Falcons’ best interests to get a deal done as soon as possible.”
While he may be set to change the course of NFL contract negotiations from here on in, Flacco’s record deal hasn’t seemed to phase him too much. After signing the deal he made a trip to McDonald’s to celebrate.