• With the CBA negotiation looming, it’s best for agents to lock up player extensions now—which is precisely what Goff’s (and Wentz’s) agent did.
By Conor Orr
September 04, 2019

You hate to refer to anything financial as a “win-win” in a sport like football, when the team owners are really and truly the ones winning every time. But, the recent extensions signed by both Carson Wentz and, late on Tuesday night, Jared Goff, illustrated a smart micro-trend established by their shared agents.

Neither is technically re-setting the market in the archaic terms we view quarterback contracts (by average salary per year, atop which sits Russell Wilson at $35 million), but both set and subsequently leapfrogged the NFL record in practical guarantees ($107,970,00 for Wentz, $110 million for Goff) and attained some long-term security fairly early in their careers while facing somewhat nebulous situations. For Wentz, that was suffering injuries in back-to-back seasons, and for Goff, it was weathering the idea that any quarterback in wunderkind coach Sean McVay’s offense would succeed in a similar way.

And really, if you’re an NFL player, isn’t long-term peace of mind all that really matters? (And it’s a bonus for the agents, who can still call the deals record-setting.)

I thought Jason Fitzgerald, who writes brilliantly about the salary cap at Over the Cap, also made a good point on Tuesday night when I reached out to ask him about the common threads between both deals: Owners tend to get financially conservative heading into years where the collective bargaining agreement is being negotiated, and as we stare down the prospect of a new CBA, it may be best for agents to strike now, before the weird begins.

What’s in it for the owners?

In a few years—assuming we’ll still be here, publishing articles and covering the NFL as a free press—there’s little doubt we’ll be buffing the Hall of Fame statues of Les Snead and Howie Roseman for having the foresight to lock their quarterbacks down before another inevitable cycle of insanity douses the quarterback market in lighter fluid. Patrick Mahomes will likely dig in for an extension after this season, given that 2020 is the fourth year of his deal, and he will be out to top the market in every conceivable category. The same can be said for Deshaun Watson. Tom Brady can also reach full market value this offseason, if he so chooses, thanks to the quirks in his new extension.

So, both Roseman and Snead are buying homes at pre-seller’s market prices, while Wentz and Goff are selling their stocks before the personal and professional markets might crash (need any more crappy, milquetoast business analogies?).

Up next, Dak Prescott, who can either jump Wentz and settle into this sub-market, or look to hurdle the entire field. Either way, don’t be surprised if Tuesday’s movement creates some action…

A programming note: With the NFL regular season kicking off on Thursday, Sept. 5, The Morning Huddle will now be published five days a week!

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Question or comment? Email us at talkback@themmqb.com.

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