How Cousins' deal "empowers" Aaron Rodgers for next move
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Kirk Cousins was one of the biggest stories of this offseason, and not because the free-agent quarterback signed with the Minnesota Vikings. Nope, it was because of what he signed for: Three years and $84 million.
In and of itself, that isn't extraordinary. But this is: The deal was fully guaranteed.
Nobody does that. Except the Minnesota Vikings just did. And that leads to the question: If a Kirk Cousins is worth that much in guaranteed money, what happens when a star quarterback like Aaron Rodgers ... and others, including Philadelphia's Carson Wentz ... negotiate future deals?
For an answer, the Talk of Fame Network podcast turned to former Eagles' and Cleveland Browns' executive Joe Banner, who in the early 2000s was behind some of the smartest and most carefully structured contracts in Philadelphia -- deals that allowed the Eagles to keep a cadre of young stars like Brian Dawkins for extended periods.
So back to the question: What does the Cousins contract mean for Rodgers and other quarterbacks ... heck, other star players, period?
"It gives Aaron Rodgers the power to answer that question however he wants," said Banner. "He can go back to the tradition of signing for a little more than the next guy -- or the signing bonus that really doesn't cover all of the years that he signed for. Or he can now chart a totally different path.
"Here's the really compelling thing to me ... and I didn't say this very loud when I was on the other side of things. But it never made sense for agents to be agreeing to deals that were longer than the amount that was guaranteed. Why sign a deal that's only two or three years with guaranteed money -- sometimes even less -- and give up your right for five years?
"So I think what Kirk did -- and what Aaron can take advantage of, if he wants to -- is kind of shine the light on the reality ... whether it's a one-year franchise tag, or it's a three-year deal. Why do you not reserve your right to go back into the market place when the guarantee is going to run out? If you're good you're going to get even more money, and if you're not good, the team is going to get rid of you anyway. So you have absolutely nothing to lose, other than the illusion of a five-year deal with some massive number attached to it.
"So Aaron should now be empowered to decide: Does he want try to do something more reasonable for the team and let them spread out the guarantee and win -- like we saw Drew Brees just do? Or does he want to really push the ball to the wall and maximize his value and guarantee? And, if so, you're looking at a massive, massive deal."
And that was just the start of our conversation. To hear more, just connect to the following link: