Thursday, July 31, 2014
Behind The Scoreboard
Big bucks in NFL, too
I have to look at this as a spill-over of sorts from my last column. A friend stated that he had never known me to name the top highest paid players in the NFL. Had I ever done a comparison of the “big bucks” battles between the NBA and the NFL? I didn’t have to think long to answer that. Naturally, I have related the pay scales of some of the new hires, mostly quarterbacks, but naming 10 players in the NFL who went to the bank on payday with a wheelbarrow – never. And making a comparison between the different sports – also never.
One doesn’t have to be a genius to know that denoting salary distinctions between the number one and number three sports can’t possibly lend itself to easy mathematics. The variables are too numerous to enumerate. As in all of the major sports, there are going to be standard bearers and trend setters. Both time and necessity move salaries.
The list which I am sharing with you names only the top 10 players who have risen to the pinnacle in pay demands and is in descending order. A couple of things you will notice right away are one, the listing of the credentials which propelled them onto this ladder and two, the number and names and worth of any endorsements.
Topping the “10 most wanted” in the NFL for 2014 is Peyton Manning of the Denver Broncos. Contracted for five years at $96,000,000 congregate and prorated starting at $17 million+ per annum. If you didn’t know, Peyton is a quarterback. At nine, another quarterback, from Green Bay, has a deal worth $110,000,000 over five years with $17.9 million the first year.
Weighing in at eight and breaking the QB mold is Larry Fitzgerald, who talked the St. Louis Cardinals into a $113,000,000, seven-year pact starting at $18,000,000. Fitzgerald is a wide receiver. Right behind Larry is the entry from the beloved Saints, Drew Brees. With an $18,400,000 first year on a $100,000,000 five-year agreement, Brees keeps the quarterbacks’ stock high.
Mario Williams, probably the least recognizable of all those listed, is the number six bread winner and is a defensive end for the Buffalo Bills. His six years $96,000,000, with first year $18,800,000, challenges any history buff to come up with an instance where a DE has commanded such a payday. No piker at number five and a QB who just keeps on ticking is Big Ben Roethelisberger of Pittsburgh. He divides the list with a six-year contract worth $88,000,000 with a start of $18,895,000. He probably needs no further introduction.
The number four money man is Eli Manning of the NY Giants. Making quite a bit more than big bro, Eli gets $20,850,000 the first year on a six-year, $97,500,000 deal. Eli is also a signal caller. I don’t suppose that anyone would believe that Jerry Jones would allow his QB to be shunted aside in the green parade. Tony Romo’s six-year, $108,000,000 salary is broken down with a $21,773,000 first check.
It might surprise some to know that the number two man is not a QB. His name is called often over the course of a season, although it is difficult to pronounce. Ndamukong Suh, defensive tackle of the Detroit Lions commands a $22,412,000 check from a five-year, $63,502,000 deal. What I said about Williams a few bars up also applies to Suh. Eclipsing Suh by a few bucks is number one Jay Cutler of the Chicago Bears. His pay is $22,500,000 per year on a seven-year, $126,700,000 contract.
I don’t suppose anyone on this list would have any short term requirement for a money counter. I don’t mean an accountant, just a money counter.
Speaking of salaries, there is one item which should be mentioned here. In case you didn’t hear, Los Angeles filled its head coaching vacancy over the weekend. It was stated that Byron Scott signed a four-year, $17+ mil contract. Scott has 13 seasons coaching experience with a record of 416-521 (.444). He has coached three different teams in the NBA (New Orleans, New Jersey and Cleveland).
Not making a judgement, just reporting a fact.
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